Bourne fancy their chances of an upset
BOURNE fancy their chances of causing a Jaidka Cup upset by beating holders Peterborough Town in tonight’s semi-final at The Abbey Lawns (6.15pm).
After a slow start to the summer, Bourne have hit a bit of form in recent weeks with successive Lincs Premier Division wins either side of their Jaidka quarter-final win over Yaxley.
Overseas star Farhad Masood has hit his stride, while the club’s other summer recruits Peter Morgan and Conrad Louth are showing signs of their best form.
Bourne skipper Matt Creaney said: “We are playing pretty well right now so we definitely have a good chance of winning tonight.
“We did lose to them in the Rutland League earlier this season, but it was a close game and we are playing better now.”
Creaney expects to lead a full strength side with the exception of seamer Mark Dixon and Bourne’s legendary all-rounder Dave Christmas who is a long-term absentee.
Town are not quite so well off. Leading professional Tanveer Ahmed is abroad with the Pakistani national squad while gifted opening batsman David Clarke is playing for his university side.
All-rounder Lewis Bruce, who has an excellent bowling record in Minor Counties limited overs cricket for Cambs this season, is also doubtful after damaging a finger taking a catch in the Rutland League on Sunday.
But Town skipper Ajaz Akhtar is still his usual confident self. Akhtar said: “It’s very rare for a team to have all their best players available for an evening game.
“But we are luckier than most teams in that we have a lot of depth. We also have batsmen who are capable of winning a game in a handful of overs.
“Asim Butt couldn’t be in better form, while Matthew Pateman and Connor Cunningham can be very destructive. It will be tough tonight, but we intend to fight hard to keep hold of the trophy as it took us such a long time to get it back.”
Town won the Jaidka for the first time in 12 seasons last summer and will start favourites tonight. The key battle could take place early on when in-form Masood bowls to Butt who has cracked tons in each of his last two competitive matches.
The winners take on Market Deeping or Khalsa in the final on Wednesday, June 23. The second semi-final takes place next Wednesday (June 16) at Outgang Road. professionally for Woodhall Spa in the Lincs Premier Division.
Bruce said: “It’s nice to be asked, but I play for Peterborough not for money.”
Club cricket is awash with money. Former Town opener Alan Burton is on a reported £100 per game plus a generous cash-per-run deal to play village cricket for Altofts in the Yorkshire Central League.
IN GOOD FORM: Bourne’s overseas star Farhad Masood could give Peterborough Town some problems to night.
CLOSE TO HIS BEST: New Bourne recruit Conrad Louth.