De Silva and Janjua inspire W&M to win

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Alvaston and Boulton 2nd XI 228 all out lost to W & M 1st XI 232-2 by 8 wickets

W & M’s fifth successive victory in Division 3, against formidable opponents, moves them clear at the top of the table after South Wingfield were unable to complete their game and had to settle for 15 points.

Five bowlers shared the wickets for the 1sts with the much-anticipated return of Dinesh de Silva making an immediate impression.

He took 3-44 and Paul Hindmarsh 2-53.

A & B were in deep trouble at 119-6 before the vastly experienced Ant Woolley made 71 and Rick Crowther 37, adding 104 for the seventh wicket.

Stephen Lowe and Jimmy Redfern had taken a wicket each and, at the end, Andy Malia-Barlow took 3-20 to wrap up the innings.

In reply, an opening stand of 108 saw Alex Park, with 28, playing second fiddle to Aafan Janjua. Mali-Brown and Janjua added another 80 before the latter was out for 97, his best of the season so far.

Then Hindmarsh hit a rapid unbeaten 30 as Malia-Barlow finished on 51 not out, to complete a fine all-round performance.

This excellent win was marred only by the loss of three points for a slow over rate.

W & M 2nd XI 272-7 drew with Butterley United 1st XI 238-8

The weather was not exactly ‘....foul and fair day....’ such as Macbeth had previously seen (in a game coincidentally sponsored by MacBeth, Cash and Co).

It was instead a grey wild day – far from fair – and yet the players provided an absorbing contest in Division 7N with over 500 runs, a hurly-burly of battle which was ultimately neither won nor lost. A sterling effort from both sides.

Put in to bat, W & M made 52 for the first wicket with Michael Jefferiss scoring a fluent 34.

James Brierley and James Thompson both made crisp 20s before Jack Pollard joined Andrew Redfern in a productive stand of 75.

The latter was eventually run out for 80 (following his 89 in the previous game) while Pollard hit a powerful 70.

If Butterley, bottom of the table and without a win so far, felt daunted by the total, they didn’t show it. In fact, they comfortably outscored W & M in the first half of the chase.

Shaun Brown made a pugnacious 59 and Joe Burke, whose wicketkeeping had greatly impressed earlier, hit a valiant 47. At 158-2 after 30 overs, the visitors, indeed, had the momentum to cause a real upset.

By then, Neil Doxey had turned to his sixth bowler, Lewis Heap (up from the 3rd XI) whose age allowed him to bowl spells of just seven overs. From 158-2, the visitors slumped to 179-6 and Heap, in those seven overs, had 4-16, a truly wonderful effort. Steven Woodger, though, was still aiming to win it for Butterley but when Gary McCabe had him well caught for a violent 30, a draw was their only option.

This was a highly entertaining game and the players should be thanked for warming us up. It is hoped, as well, that Butterley continue to play such enterprising cricket and that this approach lifts them out of the relegation zone. On the evidence of this performance, that is the least they deserve.

Ambergate 3rds 32 all out lost to W & M 3rds 33-2 by 8 wickets.

Ambergate, equal fourth in Division 9N with W & M at the start of play, had made 224-5 to win their previous match. So, this promised to be a stern test for the 3rds bowlers then, without Lewis Heap, who was promoted to the 2nd XI.

Instead, Matt Daldorph took a season’s best 7-12, all the victims being bowled, and earning himself the County League bowler of the day award.

In reply, a couple of early wickets handed Ambergate a single point before Mike Harwood and Tim Shepherd secured a one-sided victory for W&M.