ANOTHER CENTURY As The ‘A’ Team SECURE 2nd Place
Senior Weekend Round-Up: Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th August
The final full weekend of the cricket season (the 1st Team still have Great Witchingham to play on September 11th) saw the A Team secure second spot in Alliance Division 5 as yet another century – this time by Richard Wood – brought a convincing victory over Beccles and, while the B's and C's both lost, the Ladies rounded off the weekend by beating Topcroft.
Defeat last week against Old Catton meant that the A Team needed to get 3 more points than rivals Ashmanhaugh and Barton Wanderers and, even after losing the toss, Simon Woods side certainly did their bit duly achieving the maximum 25 points in winning for the 13th time in 15 completed matches. However, Ashmanhaugh also beat Thetford and took enough points (23) to pip Melton to the title by just 2. Richard Wood's unbeaten 102, the 11th century of his Melton career, was the highlight of the A's 218-3 against Beccles A with Martyn Cook (45) and Kai Wilkinson-Loines (25 not out) the other main contributors. Matt Henderson's 5-20 then ensured a comfortable victory as Beccles were bowled out for 103 with Kyle Weston taking 2-24, Dale Weston 1-18 and Josh Wright 1-11. Terry Hunter (29) and Mark Taylor (26) top-scored for the visitors and strangely, apart from one run out, all the wickets fell to catches with Woods, Wood, Wright and Cook all snapping up two apiece. The photo shows the promotion-winning A Team.
Mattishall's abandoned match against Beccles last week means that the First Team, who were without a fixture on Saturday, are safe from relegation.
The Bs finished comfortably in 6th spot in Norfolk League 3SE after a narrow defeat against mid-table rivals Kirkley and Belton. In a match reduced to 35 overs, Melton scored 141-6 at the UEA but the visitors chased it down for the loss of 4 wickets. Woody Loines (40), Sam Davey (32) and Eusha Fawad (30) were the main contributors for Melton but young George Alcock added a breezy 18. Despite a good effort in the field, and wickets for James Alcock (8-0-26-1), Alex Haverson (8-2-19-1), Ben Johnson (5-0-27-1) and Fawad Kaiser (8-0-39-1), opener Boby Thomas hung around for a solid 65 and Ethan Boby (25) provided good support as Kirkley won with 9 balls to spare.
The C Team snatched defeat from the jaws of victory at Saxlingham against Topcroft B. In a match also reduced, this time to 40 overs per side, because of early rain, Melton found themselves chasing the visitors' 145-8 after Leo DeSalis (2-16), Martin Alcock (2-26), Chris Mckay (3-12) and Sam McKay 2-17 had all bowled good spells. Young spinner, Sam, making his senior debut, bowled with great flight and control. In reply, after the early dismissal of Clive Gristwood, Melton were comfortably placed at 90-1 from 20 overs following a partnership of 90 between Chris McKay and Mark Hosmer. The dismissals of Chris for 51 then Mark for 25, in quick succession didn't cause too much consternation at first but wickets just kept tumbling. Steve Phoenix scored a chancy 18 before needlessly running himself out and Duncan Greenslade added 18 to take Melton to the brink of victory before he too surrendered rather tamely. In the end Melton lost by 5 runs, a disappointing end to a disappointing season in terms of results. After winning their opening match against Diss, the Cs managed to lose the next 9 despite being competitive in all of them and, with 4 cancelled and 2 abandoned, it's been a strange season. Remarkably the Cs still picked up enough points to finish above both Garboldisham C and Old Buckenham B; give a game to some of the club's older stalwarts and ‘blood' many promising youngsters, including, on Saturday, Sam McKay and Stanley Burchall so skipper Duncan can feel very pleased with his efforts.
The Sunday Team's final game was conceded by Caister but the women's team chased down Topcroft's 103-6 to win by 7 wickets. Alice Greenslade, with 2-18, 16 not out and a run out, produced an outstanding all-round performance but was ably assisted by Rebecca Davey who retired with 30, captain Rachael Hustler who scored 18 and took 1-12, Connie Leinster (1-17) and Megan Ellse with a catch and a run-out. The rest of the girls, Charlotte Brock, Tiffany Lambert, Delphi Wilkinson-Loines and Jess Ellse, making a welcome return to cricketing action, also played their part in a good team performance.