Captain Kempster stars to send Leighton home with a win

Jack Kempster
Jack Kempster

Jack Kempster starred with both bat and ball to drag Leighton Buzzard away from the Cherwell Division 2 relegation scrap with a win over Sandford St Martin.

The Leighton skipper took six wickets before hitting 59 as six side eased to a five wicket win under darkening skies which threatened to wash the afternoon away.

His impact was felt almost immediately as Kempster removed Sandford opener Thomas Tanner with the second ball of the day for a duck.

His opening spell alongside Tom Pope saw the pair then remove Ian Reynolds (4), Andrew Whilton (11), Derek Hoebrugge (0) and Chris Thompson (6) to leave the home side toiling on 36-5.

A slight reprise for the home side saw Sandford recover, but only slightly as Kempster took out Thomas Goffe for 25, trapped Benjamin Proctor LBW for 7 and then Sebastian Skinner for a first-ball duck en route to sensational figures of 6-33.

Lee Selfe (2-19) took the final wicket of the innings though as Sandford were back in the pavilion for 114.

Kempster was back out in the middle to open the batting for Leighton, knowing they would need to score runs quickly should the weather halt their progress.

At a strike rate of nearly 160, Kempster fired 59 from 37 balls, with nine fours and a six to put the visitors in a winning position.

Simon Smith would take 3-13 for Sandford, but Kempster’s brilliant batting meant Leighton were well on their way to victory, reaching 115-5 in 18.3 overs.

The win lifts Leighton to sixth in Division 2, 26 points clear of the relegation zone.

In Division 1, Great Brickhill took full advantage of Oxford Downs 2nds’ rained-off affair by beating Buckingham Town 2nds to take over at the top of the table.

Four wickets apiece for Jack Woodhouse and Asif Khan reduced the visitors for just 115. Patrick Sreenivasaprasad’s unbeaten 60 from 37 balls guided Brickhill to 119-2 and an eight wicket win and the lead in the league now by a single point.