GREAT MELTON B (5 points) lost to COSTESSEY (24 points) by 5 wickets at Costessey in the Norfolk League Division 2
The beautiful south standing pavilion at Costessey provided a pleasant facade against which Melton’s B Team pretenders went into the clash of near neighbours with high hopes of a morale boosting victory.
Invited to bat first, skipper Hughes unveiled a new order to the batting line up, once again entrusting young Rob Smith to open, this time with Tim Hales. The verve of the opening overs suggested this was not going to be an easy afternoon. With a dozen on the board, but nothing off the bat, the prodigy Rob snicked behind. Jon Moxon came out to face the music, drove for four, then stood and watched as the erstwhile wicketkeeper Tim was cleaned bowled.
Fawad Kaiser strode to the crease, looking to provide the cure to the early malaise. A 25 run partnership ensued, including a serene clip of his hips for 6 by the Punjab Prince. The fall of his wicket, for just 11 at 42, sent shivers through the visitors’ ranks, and even though the brisk but wayward bowling continued to provide plenty of runs and momentum to the innings, the feeling was that this would be a difficult day for batting.
Toby Wyatt (7) offered stern resistance without managing to break the shackles; Moxon (13) was pouched driving a full toss outside off; Eusha Fawad (0) walked across to off and was castled behind his pads; Tony Alborough (7), all jitters and prods, soon departed the scene as the skids were put under the visiting batsmen. Joey Greenslade (4) tried desperately to halt the slide, but with his departure, at 78-8, the alarm bells were ringing loud, and something extreme was needed to turn the innings around.
De Salis (14*) attempted to provide a platform from which Liam Hughes could attack, and together, across 15 overs of almost test match batting, they cobbled together a 41 run partnership, edging the side closer to a competitive score. Hughes (28) was undone by a slower delivery outside off stump, and only managed to drag on, before Gary Coulson was trapped in-front for the fourth duck of the innings. Costessey’s bowling profligacy gave Melton nearly one third of their total 122, and something to defend.
The dye was cast early in the hosts riposte, de Salis’ first ball was punched back past him for four, and his fourth, dropped short, forward cut past extra cover for four more. Coulson was keeping it as tight as ever from the Playground End, with successive maidens and the wicket of L Smith, caught above his head by Moxon at Silly Cover Point, to give some encouragement to the beleaguered visitors.
Sylvester (33) joined his captain Taylor, and taking a liking to Leo’s offerings, launched a massive attack on the struggling seamer, despatching him to the deep square leg with consummate ease.
A moment of madness gifted Melton their 2nd wicket. A classic Yes, No, Sorry, doing for Sylvester as Greenslade destroyed the stumps form Moxon’s throw. A Norman (24*) watched helplessly as Taylor (27) chipped Fawad to Wyatt at short mid wicket, and S. Horner top edged the spinner to short fine leg. Melton hoped an end was opening up, as Hughes and Fawad in tandem began to squeeze the home side’s reply with some tight, controlled bowling.
M Clarke (13) became Fawad’s 3rd victim of a penetrative spell, trapped infront before the left handed B Foxcroft decided to cut loose, lofting Fawad over mid off into the swings for a maximum on his way to a quick fire 15, put his name in the frame for the Aussie line up at Headingly and conclude proceedings.
Great Melton B
T Hales ct b Pollard 0; R Smith ct b J Taylor 0; J Moxon ct b J Taylor 13; F Kaiser ct b J Taylor 11; T Wyatt ct b Pollard 7; E Fawad b J Taylor 0; A Alborough ct B Horner 7; J Greenslade ct b Horner 4; L Hughes b Horner 28; L de Salis not out 14; G Coulson lbw 0. Extras 38. TOTAL 122 (D Pollard 12 – 5 – 29 – 2; J Taylor 12 – 1 – 32- 4; S Horner 9.1 – 3 – 24- 4; D Sickleman 8 – 1 – 25 – 0; B Foxcroft 2 – 1 – 2 – 0)
G Taylor ct Wyatt b Kaiser 27; L Smith ct Moxon b Coulson 0; S Sylvester run out (Moxon) 33; A Norman not out 24; S Horner ct Smith b Kaiser 2; M Clark lbw Kaiser 13; B Foxcroft not out 15. Extras 12. TOTAL (5 wickets) 127 (L de Salis 7 – 0 – 33 – 0; G Coulson 7 – 4 – 15 – 1; R Smith 6- 0 – 13 – 0; F Kaiser 12 – 3 – 41 – 3; L Hughes 6.3 – 2 – 18 – 0.)