Darley Dale’s first eleven suffer yet more dismay

Darley Dale’s first XI continued their stop start 2012 campaign against lowly Morton at a typical damp Station Road.

Looking to bounce back from a disappointing result against Swanwick Hall in their previous game, Craig Elliott duly won the toss and asked Morton to make use of a precarious looking Darley track.

Elliott’s decision looked a good one when wicket keeper Jack Stone instigated the first wicket off the bowling of Sam Lightfoot, a fantastic diving one-handed effort.

Darley built on their great start and reduced the visitors to 43-4, Lightfoot bagging another wicket before Paul Carson took two in an over.

As with the performance a fortnight ago, however, Darley failed to capitalise on their start and sat back, and this time it was Richard Hadfield rather than Luke Pressland who was the thorn in Darley’s side.

Hadfield (27) proved to be the backbone of the Morton innings. Darley will rue the drop of the Morton star by Stone off the bowling of Simon Cotterill.

Cotterill did however go on to wrap up the Morton innings, taking 4-24 in tandem with Dougie Briggs’ 2 -31.

Morton managed to amass just 118, which looked a mammoth total as Darley were reduced to 0-2 in reply.

Stone (17) and Jake Hartley (4) set about the rebuilding job and looked to be cruising as they raced to 48-2, both youngsters showing grit and determination that had Morton on the rocks.

Having each played themselves in Stone and Hartley would then be disappointed to fall within a few balls of each other.

A procession of wickets ensued with only Cotterill (10) showing any resistance, which saw Darley bowled out for just 78 and completed their thrashing.

Darley are again left licking their wounds having given up third spot in the league and will hope for a game changer this weekend away at Chesterfield.