GREAT MELTON lost to Northants touring team WEEKLEY & WARKTON by 2 runs at Melton Park in a friendly.
It was perfect weather for a midweek tour match as Melton welcomed Northants club, Weekley & Warkton to Melton Park and, in keeping with the spirit of tour matches, the two skippers contrived a perfect finish . With 4 runs needed to win off the final ball, Steve Phoenix decided to use his pad rather than his bat and the single leg bye meant the visitors got their tour off to the best possible start with a win.
Weekley & Warkton scored 190 all out with S.Turner hitting 52, A.Bussey 29 and K.Peasnell upping the run rate with 51 before retiring. Neal Clarke used 10 bowlers, with Tom Smith (5-1-17-1) and newcomer Adam Green (5-2-12-1) producing an impressive opening spell. James Robb (5-2-24-2) also bowled well while the Hughes family took 5 wickets between them, Liam claiming two but sons Fergus (5-0-23-1) and Finlay (3-013-2) impressing with their contrasting bowling styles. There was even a wicket for the Chairman!
Melton’s reply started well with Tim Hales and Fergus Hughes providing a solid start but the 2nd wicket stand between Hughes (34) and Joey Greenslade (49) really put Melton in a good position. Both were dismissed in quick succession, however, as the innings stalled. when Greenslade departed one short of a deserved half century, quickly followed by Jon Moxon and Tom Smith it left Liam Hughes with too much to do. Some lusty blows a and sweetly- timed shots from Hughes upped the run rate, however, and the last over came with 13 needed. Four runs brought Hughes his fifty whereupon he retired leaving Finlay Hughes and Steve Phoenix to try to scramble 5 off the last 2 balls. Finlay did his bit by pushing a single but the Chairman failed to get a bat on the final delivery and the visitors were able to celebrate a 2-run win.
It was a good match played in an excellent spirit by two well-matched teams. With another, younger & stronger Weekley & Warkton team winning against Norwich at Ingham, it was a winning double for the tourists but it was also a proud moment for Liam Hughes, able to play a senior match with his 2 sons for the first time.