Great Melton (21) beat North Runcton (7) by 7 wickets in the Mid-Norfolk League Boyle Division 1.
Great Melton played host to North Runcton in the first Sunday league match of the season. In somewhat differing conditions to the previous day’s opening friendlies, Melton park was drenched in sunshine as Lee Whiddett walked to the middle for the toss.
The visitor’s skipper won the toss and surprisingly decided to bat first on an early season wicket.
The ever reliable Gary Coulson and Leo de Salis opened the bowling for Melton and within 2 overs they had their first wicket with de Salis bowling Bharat for 1.
Coulson was his usual miserly self which was building pressure on the opposition batsmen and within another few overs it began to tell as de Salis soon had his second victim before Michael Farmer brilliantly ran out B. Skipper with a direct hit.
Melton were now starting to take control of the game as de Salis took his third wicket of the day in his 8th over finishing with two more economical overs to end with 3-32 off his ten overs. Farmer and Neal Clarke replaced the two openers after excellent spells continuing where they left off.
After a short and aggressive innings from J. Johnson Clarke bowled him with his third ball to leave Runcton reeling at 60-5. There was then a spirited fight back by A. Bunting (58) and J. Major (63) as they both batted sensibly rebuilding the visitors innings. Whiddett decided with 6 overs to go to change things around to try and get the breakthrough the hosts needed by bringing part time bowlers Cook and McKay into the attack. It reaped the rewards as first Cook removed Bunting then in his third over sparked a late collapse as Runcton lost their last 4 wickets for 14 runs with Matt Clarke taking a smart stumping off McKay with the last ball of the innings.
North Runcton ending their innings on 175 all out
After tea the homes side’s innings started with a few steady overs until the 6th over which Jason Whiddett took 8 off it and suddenly the shackles were off.
Melton’s openers were going at over 5 an over and by the time Runcton were celebrating their first wicket Whiddett had reached his first half century of the season with some sumptuous boundaries but fell the ball after he reached his landmark. The next over Bunn was bowled for 34 but the home side were still in a great position at 88-2 off just 16 overs.
Cook came and went for 19 after being adjudged to be LBW which brought the previous year’s Player of the Season to the crease in Jonathan “Ernie” Ellse joining Matt Clarke. The pair took a couple of overs to get going but then continued in the same vein, scoring very quickly hitting several boundaries between them including 2 sixes, to pass the target of 176 with 11 overs to spare.
Melton were excellent in all departments and hope to continue in a similar fashion in the weeks to come.
North Runcton Innings.
Bharat b. de Salis 1, Bunting b. Cook 58, H. Lankfer ct J. Whiddett b. de Salis 17, B. Skipper run out (Farmer) 3, M. Skipper ct Bunn b. de Salis 5, J. Johnson b. Clarke 11, J. Major ct Ellse b. Cook 63, W. Greenwood b. Cook 0, R. Scott b. McKay 0, J. Reavell 0*, C. Fisher st M. Clarke b. McKay 0. TOTAL 175 all out (Extras 15). G. Coulson 10-3-29-0, L. de Salis 10-2-32-3, M. Farmer 7-0-26-0, N. Clarke 7-0-32-1, M. Cook 3-0-23-3, C. McKay 3-0-21-2.
Great Melton Innings.
J. Whiddett ct Bunting b. Lankfer 53, G. Bunn b. Major 34, M. Cook LBW b. Johnson 19, M. Clarke 39*, J. Ellse 24* TOTAL 176-3 (Extras 9). J. Major 10-1-52-1, B. Skipper 8.1-0-49-0, H. Lankfer 7-0-36-1, J. Johnson 4-0-26-1, C. Fisher 1-0-4-0