GREAT MELTON C (7 points) lost to GARBOLDISHAM B (25 points) by 26 runs at Town Close in the Norfolk League Division 3
After two poor batting displays, Great Melton C produced some improvement against promotion contenders Garboldisham but it still wasn’t enough to stave off a third consecutive defeat. Simon Carding won the toss and decided to bowl first on a dampish, green wicket and in humid conditions but it all went a bit wrong from the start with Viv Sharma really struggling for control. 11 runs came off the first over and, after only 7 overs the visitors had raced to 41. Garboldisham skipper Stevenson had already hit 2 sixes and 5 fours in his 36 when Carding exploited a bit of hesitation from the batsmen to run out his fellow skipper from fine leg. The other opener, Sam Baker, still hadn’t got off the mark when he was bowled by Carding and, suddenly the visitors were 53-2. Grenville Ireland replaced Sharma and, with Carding, the wily veteran managed to put a brake on the scoring. Stuart Taylor (26), P.Baker (28), T.Ling (26) and R.Freake (26) all got in but no batsmen went on to make a high score on a ‘bouncy’ wicket that was never easy to bat on. Ireland (12-4-31-3) and Carding (11-3-37-2) both bowled well as did Fawad Kaiser (11-2-52-2) and Connor White (7-0-38-1) although Freake, Common (16), Barnes (11 not out) and Carr (5 not out) managed to plunder 42 runs off the last 5 overs to take the visitors past 200.
In fact 202-9 looked a decent score and, probably, about 30 more than Melton wanted to chase and so it proved. After losing the out-of-form Tony Alborough for 5, Woody Loines and Steve Clarke took the score to 54-1 in the 17th over. That soon became 56-4 as Loines (20) fell to a brilliant catch by Ling quickly followed by Sharma and Palmer, both for ducks. Fawad Kaiser made 7 and, when Clarke who had batted well for his 33, was bowled round his legs by Peter Barnes, it looked like any chance of victory had slipped away. 92 runs were still needed in 16 overs but with only 4 wickets in hand. Connor White raised the tempo with 21 in 5 scoring shots, including two sixes and, with Ireland and Steve Phoenix combining some good running with the occasional boundary, the scoreboard kept ticking at the requisite 6-an-over. Unfortunately, with the pair starting to cause some concern to the visitors, Phoenix called for one quick single too many and Ireland was run out at the bowler’s end for 15. With Phoenix struggling to get enough of the strike and unable to hit the boundaries required, the scoring rate edged up and, although the Chairman hit the last ball for four to finish unbeaten on 35, Melton were still 26 runs short of the visitors’ total on 176-9. Barnes (10-1-27-3) produced an economical spell of bowling at just the right time for Garboldisham to slow Melton’s progress and Freake (2-23), Asker (2-29), Carr (1-32) and Common (1-41) all took wickets.
It was a well-contested game played in an excellent spirit. No team was able to dominate for any length of time and the fact that 378 runs were scored on a difficult pitch is a tribute to both sides.
S.Baker b.Carding 0, J.Stevenson Run Out 36, B.Asker c. Kaiser b. Ireland 0, S.Taylor c.Carding b.Ireland 26, P.Baker c.Alborough b.Ireland 28, T.Ling c.Clarke b.Kaiser 26, A.Pringle lbw Kaiser 0, R.Freake Run Out 26, B.Common c.Phoenix b.White 16, P.Barnes Not Out 11, P.Carr Not Out 5, Extras 28. TOTAL (9 wickets) 202 (V.Sharma 4-0-31-0, S.Carding 11-3-37-1, G.Ireland 12-4-31-3, F.Kaiser 11-2-52-2, C.White 7-0-38-1)
Great Melton C
A.Alborough b.Common 5, D.Loines c.Ling b.Asker 20, S.Clarke b.Barnes 33, V.Sharma c.Baker b.Freake 0, A.Palmer c.Baker b.Freake 0, F.Kaiser b.Asker 7, C.White c. Baker b.Carr 21, G.Ireland Run Out 15, S.Phoenix Not Out 35, D.Greenslade c. Taylor b.Barnes 4, S.Carding Not Out 3, Extras