GREAT MELTON B (3 points) lost to GILLINGHAM (23 points) by 7 wickets at Ringsfield in the Norfolk League Division 2E
For the second week running, Great Melton B produced a disappointingly poor performance and deservedly lost by 7 wickets to a Gillingham team that adapted much better to the conditions. A very damp wicket meant it was a good toss to win but, unfortunately, Melton skipper Tony Alborough called wrongly and Melton found themselves batting. Steve Clarke and Connor Stearman struggled with their timing and a sublime cover drive by Stearman brought the only boundary in the first 10 overs. The score had struggled to 21 when Stearman was bowled by a Fowles yorker for 9. Neal Clarke went next ball, trapped lbw and both Aslam Mohammed and Clarke survived confident lbw shouts as they compiled a partnership of 41, the highest of the innings. With batsmen never really ‘in’ on the tricky surface, Aslam decided to go for his shots and hit 4 fours and a six in his 31 before being bowled by George Shipley. Thereafter it became a procession with Clarke next out, having batted 24 overs for his 12 runs, followed by Jon Moxon (4), Alborough (6), Matt Rushton (5), Steve Phoenix (0) and Kyle Mason (0), those 5 mustering just 15 runs between them! Last man Gary Coulson hung around and he and David Bunn added 19 for the last wicket but were unable to notch a third batting point as a rather dismal effort ended on 118-9. All the Gillingham bowlers, but particularly Fowles (2-27), Shipley (3-18) and Barber (3-12), made the most of the conditions.
Whereas Melton’s batsmen, with the exception of Aslan, had been tentative, the home side were positive and, with the wicket drying out in the sunshine, made relatively light work of the run chase. Openers Steve Davey and Ben Patrick saw several edges flash through or over slip or gulley but also hit some fine shots against Aslam and Mason. They were helped by some indifferent Melton fielding that included several dropped catches and, buy the time Neal Clarke induced Patrick to tread on his stumps for 33 in the 19th over, 70 runs were already on the board. A break for drinks at 23 overs disturbed Davey’s concentration and he was bowled by David Bunn next ball for 39 but, by then, the game was won. Bunn (2-26) notched a second victim, trapping Springall (17) lbw but his last over went for 14 as Tom Ashford finished the game with a flourish.
While losing the toss was a factor, it was another disappointing batting display from Melton B and there were too many fielding errors that included 5 dropped catches so there is plenty of room for improvement but it was an afternoon in the sunshine at a pleasant venue, which no Melton player had visited before, against genial opponents. There was even sausages & chips provided after the match at the Horseshoes pub. Just how village cricket should be!
Great Melton B
Steven Clarke† ct George Shipley b Jordan Barber 12; Connor Stearman b Darren Fowles 9; Neal Clarke lbw b Darren Fowles 0; Aslam Khan Mohammed b George Shipley 31; Matthew Rushton ct Benjamin Patrick b Jordan Barber 5; Jon Moxon b George Shipley 4; Anthony Alborough* b George Shipley 6; Steve Phoenix ct Kevin Springall b Liam Smith 0; David Bunn not out 13; Kyle Mason b Jordan Barber 0; Gary Coulson not out 4; Extras b (15), lb (5), w (11), nb (3) 34; Total 118 (Darren Fowles 10-2-27-2; Matthew Smith 10-1-30-0; George Shipley 10-4-18-3; Jordan Barber 10-4-12-3; Liam Smith 5-0-12-1)
Stephen Davey b David Bunn 39; Benjamin Patrick* hit wicket b Neal Clarke 33; Kevin Springall† lbw b David Bunn 17; Jordan Barber not out 4; Thomas Ashford not out 20; Extras b (3), lb (2), w (4), nb (2) 11. Total 124-3 Overs 28 (Aslam Mohammed 7-2-25-0; Kyle Mason 5-0-26-0; Gary Coulson 3-0-10-0; Neal Clarke 6-0-30-1; David Bunn 6-1-26-2; Matthew Rushton 1-0-2-0)