Leighton Town Cricket round-up

Valuable points see Leighton third in the league

Leighton had an excellent weekend with all four of its senior teams winning their respective fixtures by comfortable margins.

The firsts were at home against Buckingham IIs who lost the toss and were invited to bat first.

The visitors made a good start with 75 runs coming off the first 22 overs losing just two wickets in the process.

At this point opener Mike Taylor was dropped on 29 and Buckingham then struggled for runs, scoring just 40 off the next 22 overs.

Taylor was eventually out for 58 and only Lewis with 28 made any further contribution.

Town's bowlers Dan Scott and Lee Selfe stifled the rest of the batting with Selfe taking an excellent 4-48 off 14 overs and Scott, probably bowling his best spell ever for Town, recording a brilliant 4-25 off 17 overs.

Buckingham finished on 156-9 off 53 overs.

Town started well, putting on 35 for the first wicket before Light went for 17 to bring in last week's century maker Phil Whatmore, who was promptly dropped second ball after offering a straightforward catch to slip.

Buckingham learned to regret this error as Whatmore went on to make 61 not out with eight boundaries and one six and with help from Chris Hipwell (24) and a quick innings from Jack Kempster with 22 from 23 balls Town reached 157-4 in the 36th over for a six wicket victory.

A valuable 25 points which sees Leighton Buzzard rise to third place in the division.

Nine wicket win as Friday cracks a ton

Second placed Leighton IIs travelled to third-placed Chearsley and came away with a magnificent nine wicket victory.

The home team batted first. Bowling down the slope Rameez Dar had the ball fizzing around with new wicketkeeper Paul Darton taking some shoulder high deliveries.

Dar removed both openers while Yogesh Mistry, off a shorter run than usual, bowled an excellent unbroken 20 over stint up the slope to end with well deserved figures of 4-73.

At 112-7 most of Town's work seemed done but some swinging and edging by the lower order scrambled the final score up to 185.

Town's fielding was sharp and catching good with Darton making a good impression on his first appearance, taking three catches.

In reply Leighton lost Chris Thompson for seven but that was as good as it got for Chearsley as their bowlers were then put to the sword by a 180-run second wicket partnership between Ben Friday and Craig Wakefield.

The home team also managed to get some lift out of the pitch but it did not seem to disturb Town's pair who punished any short or overpitched deliveries.

Skipper Friday was in merciless mood as he cracked his second undefeated century of the season.

Low-flying aircraft would have been in danger as his 101 not out off just 91 balls included ten fours and nine huge sixes.

Some of Leighton's players spent the afternoon in the neighbouring fields searching for lost cricket balls.

Wakefield also joined in the mayhem with 58 not out off 63 balls including nine fours and one six but it was Friday who smashed three consecutive sixes to finish the game with more than 25 overs spare.

Town collected 25 points for their efforts whilst Chearsley claimed four points.

Clark, Jenner steady ship to set up victory

Leighton IIIs recorded their fifth consecutive victory with a 52 run win over Witney Mills IIs at Pages Park, reversing the result from the opening game of the season.

Town batted first and made a bright start with 23 off the first three overs.

But both openers had been dismissed by the seventh over and it was left to James Clark (23) and skipper Richard Jenner (31) to fashion a third wicket half century partnership.

Things were looking good for Town at 84-2 but the middle order collapsed and it was Simon Halhead's 20 runs at the back end of the innings which enabled Town to manage a total of 137 runs.

In response only two of Witney's players managed to reach double figures as Leighton's bowlers worked steadily through the batting line-up.

As ever Fraser McJannet (4-20) and Simon Halhead (3-25) were causing maximum damage with excellent support from Simon Anderson-Dry(1-13) and James Clark (2-18).

Will Smith took a stunning catch on the boundary and Witney were removed for just 85 runs.

Another 25 points means that Leighton stll head the pack chasing leaders Oxford Downs IIIs.

Development side sweep aside Blunham

With Leighton's Premier Division side having a free Sunday it was left to the club's development team to keep the flag flying, and they did so with a comprehensive victory against Blunham III .

The Development League gives young players the opportunity to play in longer games and Town fielded nine U16 players.

Batting first Town scored 236-5 from their 40 overs with excellent half centuries from Damien Glendenning and Greg O'Hara and a rapid 34 not out from captain Jack Bishop.

Blunham were then swept aside for just 70 runs as the wickets were shared around between Adam Stiles, Jack Bishop, Greg O'Hara, Richard Raine and Dan Scott. A good solid performance well worth the maximum five points for the comprehensive victory.

Schools battle it out in Kwik Cricket test

Eight of Leighton's lower schools recently took part in a kwik cricket tournament at Bell Close. In glorious sunshine Year 4 pupils battled away for the honour of representing the town in the finals of the county competition.

There was much cheering and shouting encouragement in a series of games which were played in a very sporting fashion.

The final was contested between Greenleas and Clipstone Brook B teams with Greeleas just coming out in front.

Both teams progressed to the county competition.

It was then the turn of the four local middle schools plus Fulbrook from Toddington to compete for the Year 5 honours .

Again there were some close encounters but it soon became clear that Linslade Middle had fielded a very powerful team and they swept to four victories in their four games to win the day with Fulbrook a close second.

Weekend fixtures

This weekend, the firsts travel to play Oxford III whilst the seconds play at home against top of the table Wallingford in a must win game. Both games start at 1pm.

The Third Team travel to play against Abingdon IV starting at 1.30pm.

On Sunday the Beds Premier Division team resume action with a home game against Dunstable while the development team play away against Waresley III.

Both games begin at 2pm.

Arrangements are now unde rway for Leighton's annual Six-a-Side competition which will be held at Bell Close during the week commencing Monday, July 27.