This week saw the resumption of competitive cricket across the county and beyond as Bedford Cricket Club began their Northamptonshire County League season with a comfortable 65-run victory against Kettering at The Bury on Saturday.
It was a day many thought would never come, as the coronavirus pandemic halted all sport for weeks on end, however, despite the blanket cancellation of the Bedfordshire County Cricket League, played on Sundays, their Northamptonshire counterparts have worked hard to get the game on for Saturdays.
In a revamped season, Bedford CC face a minimum of seven round robin fixtures in Division Five of one of the country’s largest league structures, before facing a potential quarter-final, semi-final and Grand Final in a knockout structure for the league title.
That journey began today as Bedford CC hosted Kettering CC at the Bury as Bedford were asked to bat first on an uncharacteristically slow and low Bury pitch.
They managed to crawl their way to 177-6 off their 40 overs, thanks in large to half centuries from Vedant Somal (60) and Ramkumar Jayaraman (52) as they shared a century partnership throughout the spine of Bedford’s innings.
It was a par score for a pitch that was tough to bat on, with Kettering providing no pace on to the bat whatsoever, Bedford’s effort had to remain patient in order to reap their rewards in the latter stages of the innings.
In response, it was Vedant Somal who also shone with the ball; his five wickets in the latter stages of the Kettering innings securing a comfortable victory, after two wickets for Arjun Manku and a wicket apiece for Liam Healey, Rajpreet Sidhu and the impressive Jake Brown had set up the bowling effort nicely for the home side.
The games come thick and fast now the season has resumed, with The Bury playing host again next Saturday against Bugbrooke CC before Thomas Kelk’s side travel to Cogenhoe in their first venture away.
The professional cricket season begins on August 1st, with Bedford keeping a keen eye on Emilio Gay, a former Bedford Cricket Club player who will hopefully be among the runs for Northamptonshire in the first-class arena as they travel to Edgbaston to face a highly fancied Warwickshire.