Great Melton B (24) beat Hingham (6) by 6 wickets in Lucas Fettes Norfolk Cricket League Division Two.
Great Melton B played host to the team one place below them in the table in a game that both sides needed to win to help ease their relegation fears.
Winning the toss skipper Liam Hughes opted to insert the visitors on a dry looking town close wicket with overcast skies above. The Smith brothers opening the bowling together kept things tight conceding only 11 runs off the first 5 overs taking 1 wicket in the process. The game then had a short delay as Rob smith ran in to bowl only to pull out in his delivery stride to appear with a bloody nose after hitting himself in the face with his bowling hand and so was forced to leave the field.
Hughes then turned to George Ducker to bowl the over that smith could not and with his 5th ball he bowled Hingham skipper D. Key for 2. Melton’s bowlers continued to be miserly with Tom Smith bowling 1-7 off his first 7 over spell. Gary Coulson replaced Ducker and was unusually expensive but kept picking up regular wickets tearing through the Hingham middle order to leave them on 104-7 with 11 overs still remaining.
Craig Edwards then came to the visitors rescue as he did in the meeting between the two sides earlier in the season. Batting patiently waiting for the bad ball, ably supported by A. Copper, they added 58 in just 8 overs as Edwards stepped on the accelerator and blasted his way to a second half century against the home side including 2 fours and 5 sixes.
Tom Smith in his second spell made the breakthrough having Cooper caught at mid-off by Hughes and Ducker returned, to replace Coulson after his 12 over spell of 4-47, to bowl Edwards for 51 with the visitors eventually reaching 179-9 from their 45 overs.
After another delightful tea provided by birthday girl Claire Hughes the Melton innings got underway with S. Clarke and G. Ducker opening the innings. After a Steady start they began to push on running well between the wickets and, Ducker in particular playing some sumptuous cover drives, give the hosts and excellent platform to build on.
The score had reached 82 and Ducker his second half century of the league season before Clarke miscued a drive up in the air to give Hingham their first wicket of the innings. Fawad Kaiser came and went for 11 and Ducker soon followed for an excellent 65 with the score on 114-3 there was the odd jitter on the side lines and especially after Kapilla Liyanapathirana swished and missed his first ball there were concerns as 180 seemed a long way away.
Liam Hughes calmed nerves as he caressed a couple of boundaries but things were much more at ease within the next couple of overs as Kapilla got into his stride hitting a boundary to get off the mark then smashing a six over the bowlers head.
The game was over only 8 overs later as Hughes and Liyanapathirana added 62 in quick time and at the end of the 38th over, although Hughes was dismissed, Melton only needed 4 to win. With Kapilla on strike on 46 he launched the 1st ball of the 39th over straight over the fence for 6 to bring the game to an end and to bring up an explosive half century of his own with only 15 scoring shots!!
The win now should ease any relegation fears for the B Team as they sit with a comfortable gap between themselves and the bottom two but another couple of wins will go a long way to help finish off what has been a somewhat inconsistent season.
D. Key b Ducker 2, T. Butcher c+b T. Smith 5, S. Guy ct S. Clarke b R. Smith 21, A. Pattison ct Wyatt b Coulson 17, R. Allen ct Hughes b Coulson 16, S. Grear-Hardy st S. Clarke b Coulson 16, J. Anderson st S. Clarke b Coulson 0, C. Edwards b Ducker 51, A. Cooper ct Hughes b T. Smith 11, D. Weston 7*, C. Harmer 1* TOTAL 179-9 (31 Extras). T. Smith 12-2-30-2, R. Smith 9-1-41-1, G. Ducker 5-1-22-2, G. Coulson 12-2-47-4, F. Kaiser 6-0-19-0, L. Hughes 1-0-2-0.
Great Melton Innings.
S. Clarke ct Butcher b Edwards 24, G. Ducker ct Grear-Hardy b Butcher 65, F. Kaiser lbw Guy 11, L. Hughes ct Allen b. Key 15, K. Liyanapathirana 52*, J. Moxon 0* TOTAL 182-4 (14 Extras). D. Weston 12-1-59-0, C. Edwards 12-4-26-1, S. Guy 7.1-1-43-1, T. Butcher 3-0-23-1, D. Key 4-0-26-1.