Great Melton A (22 Points) beat Cromer A (7) by 6 Wickets at Norton Warnes in Norfolk Cricket Alliance Division Four
Great Melton A kept their promotion hopes alive as their win, coupled with Thetford’s losing draw at Tas Valley means the Melton Park side are 17 points off second place going into the final week of the campaign.
The victory was set up after Martin Bunn hammered a glorious ton on a baking hot day on the north Norfolk coast. Both sides fancied a bat on a flat, hard surface and it was Cromer skipper Alan Lithins who won the toss. Ben Clarke got his side off to a flyer as he made a swift 32 before hitting a full ball from Ryan Hayward straight to the late arriving Damian Loines at extra cover, the score 39-1 in the 8th over.
Michael Farmer bowled a solid opening spell at decent pace and was replaced by Oliver Harris, who swiftly made an impact as his first 4 overs yielded only 1 run. He then had Graveling hit a ball straight to Tim Hales at mid-off. In his next over he trapped H Fell (4) lbw and then Lee Whiddett, replacing Hayward, had A Van Greuning (1) well stumped by Simon Woods to leave the hosts 92-4 from 24 overs.
Pace off the ball was very effective as Harris went on to record 12-4-29-2 and Whiddett 8-3-22-1. During their spells, only 51 runs were added in 16 overs, a fine effort in such good batting conditions. Cromer skipper Alan Lithins held the innings together and, assisted by J Willan, they added 120 runs as the hosts enjoyed a strong last 15 overs to their innings. Daniel Hayward (4-0-26-0) battled hard and Michael Farmer once again bowled a strong second spell to end with 11-2-43-0. Ryan Hayward had Lithins caught on the fence by Damian Loines in the final over for an excellent 95 and Willan ended 43 not out as Cromer ended on 219-5, which looked no better than a par score.
Cromer’s hopes of defending the total were, however, blown away in 10 overs of carnage as Martin Bunn, needing to leave early, went ballistic. Cromer’s weakened bowling attack was put to the sword as Martin and nephew George Bunn took the score to 79-0 after 10 overs.
Cromer rang the bowling changes and skipper Lithins did remove George Bunn for 39 and then shortly after Tim Hales was bowled by Graveling for 5 but with the score by that time 107-2 from 14 overs the run rate was no longer an issue.
Martin Bunn was joined by skipper Whiddett and together they added another 84 runs. Bunn, visibly wilting in the sun toward the end of his innings, hit 11 fours and 5 sixes as he made 107 in just 26 overs of batting. It was a knock of outstanding power as Bunn moved past 400 runs for the season. Whiddett continued on to pass 300 runs for the season in making 41 not out and it was Damian Loines who hit the winning runs as Melton cruised home with nearly 10 overs to spare, closing on 223-4.
B Clarke c Loines b R Hayward 32
R Graveling c Hales b Harris 16
A Lithins c Loines b Hayward 95
H Fell lbw b Harris 4
A Van Greuning st Woods b Whiddett 1
J Willan Not Out 43
S Downes Not Out 0
Total (5 Wickets, 46 Overs) 219
M Farmer 11-2-43-0, R Hayward 10-1-60-2, O Harris 12-4-29-2, L Whiddett 8-3-22-1, D Hayward 4-0-26-0, G Bunn 1-0-16-0
Great Melton A:
M Bunn b Finnigan 107
G Bunn c Graveling b Lithins 39
T Hales b Graveling 5
L Whiddett Not Out 41
A Alborough c Willan b Fell 6
D Loines Not Out 6
Total (4 Wickets, 36.2 Overs) 223
A Woodrow 3-0-26-0, B Clarke 3-0-17-0, A Lithins 6-0-41-1, R Graveling 7-0-49-1, J Willan 5-1-30-0, C Finnigan 4-0-32-1, P Rodwell 4.2-3-5-0, H Fell 4-0-16-1