Draw gets W&M’s firsts back on track

Aafan Janjua of Wirksworth and Middelton
Aafan Janjua of Wirksworth and Middelton

Alrewas 1st XI 114-5 (7 points) drew with W & M 1st XI 189-8 (16 points)

WIRKSWORTH and Middleton’s Derbyshire County League Division Three game with Alrewas had a delayed start which resulted in the match being reduced to 36 overs a side.

W & M batted well to reach the score they did, although they lost extra wickets in the endeavour.

Good contributions from Aafan Janjua, Jack Allen, Andy Barlow and Jack Pollard (top scoring with 45) laid a solid foundation.

At the end Vyash Gobind (30 not out) and James Brierley hit in excess of 60 in four or five overs to lift a decent total into an excellent one.

Alrewas, third in the table at the start of play and clearly a dangerous side, were restricted by some tight batting. Gobind, although wicketless for the first time this season, was especially effective, bowling his ten overs for just 17 runs.

Barlow was economical as well and, with Stephen Lowe picking up two wickets, the ever-recovering (and so improving) Brierley also taking two, and Allen one, the home side was unable to seriously threaten the target.

Tom Chapman top scored for them with 45.

This Saturday, second placed Langley Mill visit Wirksworth in what should be another stern examination of the 1sts’ progress.

W & M 2nd XI 183 (6 points) lost to Ockbrook & Borrowash 4th XI 184-4 (22 points) by 6 wickets

It was sadly ironic that this game in Division 8N, sponsored by captain David Hopkinson, should have seen the 2nds produce their worst performance of the season.

A third-wicket partnership of 109 between Neil Taylor, 54 and Mike Whittall – back from his American adventure and scoring 84 – was brilliant.

But that was it as, along with 25 extras, the other batsmen scored just 20 runs between them.

Moreover, W & M were dismissed in under 40 overs, giving the opposition an extra six overs to get the runs.

They needed just 36 of them in a performance that belied their fourth from bottom position in the table.

Indeed, on the day, it was the visitors who looked like the promotion candidates.

A run out (good work from the captain) and a wicket for Max Marshall in a valiant early spell had O & B at 40-2, but Louis Rimmington made 80 and Dan Bonsall 55 not out as the opposition won at something of a canter.

Near the end, Peter Ashurst, a very occasional spinner, took two wickets – one of them an excellent catch by Tom Boylan – but it was all too late.

With the top side Wingerworth taking just eight points from an abandoned game, the result doesn’t damage W & M’s title ambitions all that much.

They will certainly want to improve their performances, however, for the last four matches.