Promotion dreams still alive as Leighton claim nail-biting win

Leighton vs Bledlow
Leighton vs Bledlow

Leighton Buzzard go into the final week of the season knowing they need pick up nine more points than Challow & Childrey or else miss out on promotion back to Cherwell Division 1.

Leighton’s three wicket win against Bledlow Village on Saturday kept them firmly in the hunt for an immediate return to the top flight but heading into the final game next week, they sit in third spot, eight points adrift of Challow in second.

Leighton vs Bledlow

Leighton vs Bledlow

Buckingham look to have all but secured their spot in the top flight next season after beating Oxford 2nds to move 20 points clear of Leighton.

Knowing they needed to win the game following last week’s defeat Town captain Jack Kempster won the toss and put Bledlow into bat.

It was the captain himself who got Town off the perfect start striking with the first ball of the innings. The visitors then started to take advantage of the good batting conditions and built the score though opener Bartlett who struck an aggressive 61.

Then middle order player Woodward came to the wicket and took the attack to Town as he stuck the ball to the boundary regularly.

Leighton vs Bledlow

Leighton vs Bledlow

He brought up his century with a big six and eventually ended on 105 taking the score to an imposing 263 for their 53 overs.

Town's reply did not get off to a good start losing their first 3 wickets with just 47 runs on the board. Opening batsman Whatmore was looking like he would anchor the innings but when he was dismissed for 29 with the score on 73, Town’s chances of chasing down the total looked slim.

Dan Scott then came to the wicket and soon was soon into his stride as he took the attack to the Bledlow bowlers moving the scoreboard along rapidly and striking some huge maximums in the process, bringing up a half century.

He was ably supported by Dave Roberts who stuck a quick fire 21 to keep Town in with a chance of victory.

Jack Kempster then came to the wicket and he carried on from Roberts left off, scoring quickly, in partnership with Scott the pair put on a 50 partnership in just seven overs to give Town a realistic chance of victory.

Scott then departed with score on 235 for a magnificent match changing innings of 90 when he was caught on the boundary trying to hit another six.

Town now needed 32 runs from the final five overs for victory, and they made it look easy as Kempster and Francis scored the remaining runs in just three overs to wrap up an impressive three wicket victory - the captain ended on 49 not out and Francis hitting three consecutive fours to seal the victory to end on 22 not out.

Leighton Buzzard 2nds moved up to fourth in Division 5 after securing a 15 run win over Abingdon Vale. Town batted first and limped to an under par 142 mainly thanks to a vital 35 from lower order player Sam Roberts.

This proved to be enough as skipper Andy Smith was the pick of the bowlers taking another five wicket haul to end with figures of 5-47.