Great Melton C (23 points) beat Horsford C (6 points) by 2 wickets at East Harling in the Lucas & Fettes Norfolk League Division 6
Jack McCurley, just returned from university, produced a match-winning performance as Great Melton C ground out a narrow win in a tense low-scoring match. McCurley took 5-13 in 12 overs as Melton bowled out Horsford C for just 86 then starred in a 26-run partnership with Leo DeSalis to take Melton from the perilous position of 54-7 to within sight of victory. With Town Close School unavailable, Melton were very grateful to East Harling C.C. for allowing them to use their ground and stand-in skipper Steve Phoenix had no hesitation in fielding first under cloudy skies. McCurley (8-3-7-3) and Tom Smith (6-1-11-0) bowled excellent opening spells, with the former removing the first 3 Horsford batsmen to leave the visitors struggling on 23-4 after 17 overs when there was a break for rain. On the resumption Kyle Mason made it 23-5 by bowling Lake (4) and, although Horsford eventually struggled to 86 all out in the 36th over, it was largely due to 15 from J.McGowan and 26 from number 10, M.Balcombe. McCurley returned to complete his ‘fifer’, Kyle Mason took 2-14 in 5 overs, Tom Smith 1-22 in 8.2 overs and Leo DeSalis 2-18 in 9. It was a good display from all the seamers and, even considering Melton’s recent batting problems, 86 shouldn’t have caused too many problems.
George King was dismissed early on, lbw for 5, but there was little hint of what was to come as Steve Clarke (12) and Toby Wyatt (18) took the score into the forties. Clarke was bowled round his legs then Wyatt was run out 3 runs later and suddenly Melton, from 42-1, plummeted to 54-7 with Kevin Frazer (4), Simon Brett (0), Steve Phoenix (0) and Joe Bickel (5) all back in the pavilion. The visitors sensed an unlikely victory with Balcombe (12-3-17-3) causing problems with his off-spin, but McCurley and DeSalis batted very sensibly. In 14 overs they added 26 valuable runs before DeSalis (18) was bowled by a good ball from Lake with 7 runs needed. McCurley was equal to the task nudging the score to 85-8 and it was left to Kyle Mason to crash the winning 2 past mid-on to give Melton victory in the 37th over.
A.Harvey c.Brett b.McCurley 2, G.Aldridge b.McCurley 8, K.Peters c. & b. McCurley 1, R.Clarke lbw DeSalis 6, E.Lake b.Mason 4, O.Inwards c.Phoenix b.Mason 6, J.McGowan b.McCurley 15, N.Clarke lbw DeSalis 3, G.Spenceley b.McCurley 0, M.Balcombe c.Clarke b.Smith 26, N.Francis Not Out 0, Extras 15. TOTAL 86 (J.McCurley 12-4-13-5, T.Smith 8.2-1-22-1, L.DeSalis 9-3-18-2, K.Mason 5-1-14-2, J.Bickel 1-0-12-0)
Great Melton C
S.Clarke b.Balcombe 12, G.King lbw Lake 5, T.Wyatt Run Out 18, K.Frazer b.Clarke 4, S.Brett c.Aldridge b.Balcombe 0, S.Phoenix c.Harvey b.Balcombe 0, J.Bickel b.McGowan 5, J.McCurley Not Out 12, L.DeSalis b.Lake 18, K.Mason Not Out 2, Extras 11. TOTAL (8 wickets) 87 (E.Lake 9.2-1-30-2, N.Francis 5-2-8-0, M.Balcombe 12-3-17-3, R.Clarke 3-0-18-1, J.McGowan 7-2-12-1)