Originally published by the Lincolnshire Echo on July 25th 2013.
Lincolnshire CCC suffered an embarrassing 10-wicket defeat at Staffordshire in the Minor Counties Championship, making just 60 runs in their first innings.
Staffordshire set a strong total of 364 but Lincolnshire posted the meagre of responses as they hit just 60, with five players recording ducks and only skipper Brett Houston making more than 10 runs.
There were signs of a second innings fightback from Lin-colnshire with 330, but it left the home side needing just 27 to win, which they did comfortably.
“It was disappointing to lose in two days. That first innings just wasn’t acceptable”, said Matt Lineker, who was one of three players to make a half-century in Lincolnshire’s second innings.
“I think it was just a case of a bad period for us at the same time as a good period for them.
“There was some good catching and bowling and some loose shots from us. They got on a bit of a roll and we just couldn’t stop them.
“Both days were very hot and the wicket was bouncy and uneven at times. There were a few wickets where there was extra bounce or not enough. But we can’t have excuses; it just wasn’t good enough.”
Staffordshire openers Rather All and James Middleton were both on fine form at the crease but were victims of Matthew Carter’s fine bowling. Peter Wilshaw hit a huge 133 before he too was bowled by young spinner Carter, who took five wickets in the opening innings.
“Carter was brilliant with the ball and bat and (Sam) Evison did well with the bat too”, said Lineker. “This is a steep learning curve for them because they’re young but playing at a good level, but there’s a good mix of youth and experience.”
Lincolnshire then collapsed with the bat, with Greg Willott taking five wickets, but they soon followed on and made 330 in just under 85 oven.
Evison, Lineker and Houston all made half centuries, while 17-year-old Carter made a very credible 49.
Willott was lethal with the ball and again took five wickets, three of which came in quick succession with Lincolnshire only making two runs.
“There was no fingerpointing (after the first innings) really,” said Lineker. “We just talked and said if we batted well there was still a chance we could get it back.
“We didn’t in the end, but we wanted to put the mistakes from the first innings right in the second.
“In the dressing room there was definitely a case of wanting to go out and prove a point after the humiliation of getting bowled out for 60.
“We didn’t want them to walk all over us. Brett and Carter had a good partnership so it was nice to see fight right down the order.”
Staffordshire then eased to the win, with Middleton and Ali making 29 from six fours and five extras. Lincolnshire are next in action on 4th August against Norfolk.