Nothing to separate Darley Dale and Duffield

Darley Dale played out a thriller at Duffield on Saturday with both sides dismissed for 167 in a match that swung from one way to the other throughout.

Having won the toss and elected to bowl, Darley made inroads through Jacques Stephenson and Dougie Briggs, however the hosts made good early progress, taking the score to 50-2 inside 15 overs.

The visitors then destroyed Duffield’s foundations through a superb spell of aggressive bowling from Sam Lightfoot (3-26) who, ably assisted by the probing off-spin of Simon Cotterill (3-37), ripped through the hosts’ middle order.

However, Darley were meeting stubborn resistance in the form of Steven Musket (47), who edged his side closer to a competitive total before falling to the impressive Lightfoot.

Skipper Russell King then took over the mantle from Muskey, batting intelligently with the tail to land some lusty blows and frustrate the Darley bowlers.

From 96-8, King was able to hit out to see his side past 150 before being stumped off the bowling of Nathan Fearn for an enterprising 51; Duffield all out shortly after for 167.

Darley’s response was a solid one with Craig Elliott and James Marsden safely negotiating the opening overs.

With their dismissals, however, the away side needed to rebuild and did so effectively through Jamie Watts (37) and Briggs (28) to take Darley to 75-2.

However with both falling in quick succession, the task fell to Lee Marsden and Matt Heath to compile the runs and get the side within touching distance.

In an increasingly tense affair, both fell as Darley began to lose their way; 110-5 with ten overs remaining.

The visitors continued to score at a decent rate but as the wickets continued to fall, it became clear the game was to be decided in the last over of the match.

Darley found themselves 164-9 and with three off the first three deliveries, Darley required one off the final three, however a skied effort fell to the fielder at cover to mark the end of an incredible tied game.