Seconds and thirds are unable to win

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Wirksworth & Middleton seconds had to settle for a winning draw in a game they dominated and had looked certain to win.

Nevertheless, 20 points (the maximum possible for a draw) was a healthy comeback from the previous week’s disappointing performance.

After losing a couple of early wickets, James Thompson made 34, and Peter Ashurst, with 38, steadied the innings.

Jacob Bradbury made a breezy 21 before Max Marshall, 44, and Ian Peacock, 45 not out, ensured a competitive total.

The hosts never threatened it. They slumped to 21-5 and then 76-8 as Marshall and Stephen Lowe destroyed the top order.

Lowe managed his full 14 overs, taking a remarkable 4-14. Neil Doxey took two more wickets, and Toby Howard, one, but W Richardson was immovable for Marehay, making 54 not out, to secure the draw.

The third XI fell to a two-wicket defeat at home to Denby.

Put in to bat on a dampish pitch, only Keith Williams, with 57, made a decent score for W & M, along with contributions from Colin Julian and Paddy Turner.

It seemed 115 was surely not enough runs but, at one stage, it appeared it might well be. Lewis Heap was the pick of the bowlers, taking 4-18 from 14 overs.

Denby were in some trouble at 58-6 but their opener Mark Bott (47 not out) found another Foulke (Paul) to stay with him as they took the score to 111-7, and almost there. Paddy Turner took two wickets and Craig Shore and Stuart Wheeldon one each.

W & M gave away 23 extras to Denby’s nine. In tight matches these are vital statistics.