In their last appearance at Melton Park this season, Great Melton recorded a convincing win over Saxlingham and have an outside chance of finishing runners up to Beccles should they win their last game against Hetherset & Tas Valley on Saturday, and other results go their way.
Saxlingham chose to bat first. Maskell and Browne opened the innings – Browne was his usual aggressive self hitting a flurry of boundaries but Maskell (12) was the first to go edging a Richard Waddell delivery to wicketkeeper Wood and failing to cash in on earlier good fortune when he was bowled by a no ball from Mark Scott. Browne (26) continued to play expansive strokes and so it was no surprise that he eventually missed a straight one and was bowled by Mark Scott. Lacey and Adams set about rebuilding the innings, which they did well – Adams was the more attacking but Lacey (38) worked the ball around well until he mistimed a drive to become the first of 2 wickets for Alex Cooper. Adams did his best to score freely but received little support from the Saxlingham middle order and when he was senselessly run out for 67, the runs all but dried up against accurate bowling by Cooper, Godbold and Sims but credit should go to Richard Waddell too, who bowled with good pace and accuracy when Lacey and Adams were both at the wicket to record 1 for 43 from 9 overs. Saxlingham’s innings closed on 175 for 8 – a total that never looked enough on a flat wicket and fast outfield.
In reply Melton lost Martyn Cook (8) early but Richard Wood and Jason Whiddett forged a partnership of 125 for the second wicket. Whiddett hit 7 boundaries in his innings of 55 before being caught off the slow bowling of Adams, but by this time Melton were in complete control with Wood once again batting serenely – he hit 11 boundaries in his innings of 78 not out, passing 600 runs for the season, and with Marcus Godbold smashing four 4’s in his innings of 18 not out, the home side ran out comfortable winners in just the 33rd over.
Maskell ct Wood b Waddell 14, A Browne b Scott 26, D Lacey ct M Godbold b Cooper 38, D Adams run out 67, T Browes ct Wood b Cooper 2, S Herritt lbw b Sims, M Holroyd st. Wood b D Godbold 3, A Fisher run out 1, N Pearce not out 7, C Benton not out 1. Extras 17 Total 175 for 8 (D Godbold 9-1-30-1, M Scott 7-2-23-1, R Waddell 9-2-43-1, A Cooper 12-2-38-2, R Sims 9-2-40-1)
J Whiddett ct Maskell b Adams 55, M Cook lbw b Mendham 8, R Wood not out 78, M Godbold not out 18. Extras 19. Total 177 for 2 (A Browne 8-1-27-0, D Mendham 5-0-36-1, T Browes 6-1-27-0, N Pearce 9-0-48-0, D Adams 5.5-0-28-1)