Great Melton (8 points) lost to Downham (21 points) by 117 runs at Downham in the Mid-Norfolk Sunday League Shield Premier Division
Nine dropped catches proved to be Melton’s undoing as the Sunday team crashed to a heavy defeat at Downham. The Carter Junior Cup semi-final, the V Festival, holidays and the fact that the match was at Downham meant that skipper Marcus Godbold had the usual difficulties raising a side and, although the Cooper brothers, Tom Wilson, Matt Clarke and Godbold himself provided plenty of batting power, the rest of the side was made up of B and C Team players. Up against Downham’s overseas Pete Cairns and County 2nd Team bowler Adam Todd, Melton had to make sure they took any chances that came their way, having been asked to field first. Unfortunately Matt Clarke spilled a chance behind in the first over and this seemed to set a trend. Melton went on to spurn 9 catchable chances, some more difficult than others, the most expensive being Cairns who was put down when he had scored just 14 and went on to hammer an unbeaten 102 off 22 overs. An unbroken stand of 119 between Cairns and Todd (41 not out) off the last 14 overs saw a chaseable total become a formidable one of 269-4. Johnny Cooper (10-1-60-1) bowled well early on before conceding 31 in his last 3 overs and Nav Sharma (5-0-23-1), Neal Clarke (10-0-63-1) and Ryan Hayward (7-1-39-0) tried hard to stem the tide but Alex Cooper (3-0-25-1) and Tom Wilson (5-0-51-0) took the brunt of the punishment. The only ‘catching’ highlight was a fine one-handed diving effort by ‘nearly’ 60-year-old Chairman, Steve Phoenix!
With such a big total to chase it was important for Melton to get off to a good start but Johnny Cooper looked a little out of touch and was bowled for 7. Alex Cooper and Tom Wilson, however, looked in excellent form and their parnership of 81 in 12 overs included a flurry of boundaries. Cooper was eventually bowled by spinner Gould for 55 and Wilson soon followed trying to hit Cairns’ left-arm spin for one boundary too many. His 47 was the last substantial Melton innings as the batting collapsed from 140-3 to 154 all out, Gould taking 4-35.
J.Forder c.Phoenix b.Sharma 37, T.Tansley b.J.Cooper 19, J.Gould c.Godbold b.A.Cooper 24, P.Cairns Not Out 102, C.Sharp c.Phoenix b.N.Clarke 18, A.Todd Not Out 41, Extras 13. TOTAL (4 wickets) 267 (J.Cooper 10-1-60-1, R.Hayward 7-1-39-0, N.Sharma 5-0-23-1, N.Clarke 10-0-63-1, A.Cooper 3-0-25-1, T.Wilson 5-0-51-0)
J.Cooper b.Grady 7, A.Cooper b.Gould 55, T.Wilson c.Todd b.Cairns 47, M.Godbold c.b Gould 13, M.Clarke c. & b. Gould 10, S.Wooldridge b.Todd 0, S.Phoenix c.Sharp b.Gould 7, J.Bickel c.b.Sexton 1, N.Clarke c.Yates b.Sexton 2, N.Sharma lbw Yates 2, R.Hayward Not Out 0, Extras 6. TOTAL 154 (S.Sharp 6-2-27-0, D.Grady 4-0-23-1, S.Sexton 5-1-19-2, P.Cairns 5-0-41-1, J.Gould 10-1-35-4, A.Todd 5-1-4-1, P.Yates 1-1-0-1)