GREAT MELTON (4 points) lost to MARTHAM (23 points) by 8 wickets at Martham in the Norfolk Alliance Division 3
In general terms, the passing of the years does tend to ameliorate the pain of defeat. But there are exceptions to every general rule! Melton’s loss to Martham on Saturday was felt as keenly by the ‘elderly’ contingent, as by the young guns of the side. In fairness to the home side, they had done remarkably well to produce a wicket which played as well as it did, notwithstanding it had been closeted under a tarpaulin for the most the the previous 12 hours. However, it was always going to be a good toss to win, and Martham’s stand in skipper did just that. He had no hesitation in inserting Melton who made a promising start. Matt Clarke in particular looked in good form whilst unfurling a number of authoritative pulls. When he top edged a sweep to fall for 32, Melton were 55 for 1 from 16 overs. Unfortunately, momentum deserted the innings for the next 20 overs, as wickets fell with upsetting regularity for Olly Harris’s men. Only Sam Mann (34) from the top order provided any stability with a gutsy innings. There was a flourish from the lower order in the form of Ben Carding (15 not out) and Aslam Mohammed (welcome back to him by the way) who was unbeaten on 26, so that the total at least had the veneer of respectability. However, 157 was never likely to be enough.
And so it proved, as Martham made steady progress to the target to win by 8 wickets. Both Alex Rennie (9-0-28-2) and Aaron Garner (9-2-27-0) both bowled well on a wicket which assisted the slower bowlers all day. But with too little to defend, and a number of missed chances in the field, it never looked likely that the visitors would prevail. Jack Whatmough was unbeaten on 67 and Finn Grist on 43 while Melton are left to fight for respectability for the remainder of the season, which is a disappointment after such a promising start.
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