W & M 1st XI 250-5 (27 points) beat Trentside 1st XI 110 all out (3 points) by 140 runs
After Wirksworth and Middleton 1st XI’s previous win, the suggestion was made suggested that it was by no means a flawless performance.
This one, however, against second in the table Trentside, would be hard to fault.
In an unbeaten run of six games, the last four have garnered 87 points, which is promotion form. Whether, in view of their poor run earlier on, this is a possibility remains to be seen but this latest result has seen them move one place up the table for the fifth week in a row.
Once again substantial partnerships were crucial, this time three of them. Iftikher Ahmed (43) and Andy Barlow shared 84 for the second wicket, followed by Luke Boden’s 32.
All three of them batted superbly with Barlow stumped for 58. Jack Allen made a few before being, perhaps, just too hyperactive, after which Vyash Gobind (34 not out) and Jack Pollard (22 not out), added another 66 with some highly intelligent batting.
Scott Dunn took three wickets (for plenty) and while the visitors leaked extras (over 40 of them) one has to say their ground fielding was excellent – the best seen this season.
In reply, Gobind, with genuine pace, and Stephen Lowe, with deadly accuracy, imposed themselves.
They were well supported by excellent catches by Ahmed and Pollard and, at drinks, Trentside were in disarray at 62-6.
W & M, of course, have had opponents similarly placed before but this time there was no problem as, in addition to Lowe’s 1-17 from ten overs, Pollard took a wicket and Barlow 2-27.
Gobind returned to knock over the last two and finished with a brilliant 6-40. He now has 18 wickets from his last four games, a key factor in the current success, but this was, above all, a very fine performance from the whole side.
The match was generously sponsored by Alan Hopkinson.
The 1st XI’s next three games are against the three teams below them at the start of this match.
Nothing can be taken for granted in this division. Two of the three have already beaten W & M this season.
Pilsley 2nd XI 136 all out (3 points) lost to W & M 2nd XI 137-2 (22 points) by 8 wickets
The 2nds put last week’s disappointing defeat behind them with this comprehensive win in Division 8N to remain second.
Fresh from a very good run chase the previous week, the hosts might have felt confident.
For W & M to bowl them out for 136 was an excellent effort; to have done it without their opening bowlers was especially creditable.
The wily Neil Doxey took the honours with a season best return of 6-35 as only Josh Hardy, with 54, made any runs.
After tea, W & M wasted no time in chasing down the target. Andrew Redfern, 58, and Neil Taylor, 60 not out, opened with a commanding 119 as the win was achieved in just under 24 overs.
W & M 3rd XI 140 all out (27 points) beat Breadsall 3rd XI 112 all out (6 points) by 28 runs
Not for the first time this season, the resilience of the 3rd XI (captained by Colin Julian) was much in evidence.
An early batting collapse saw them to a parlous 68-6 with only Julian’s 23 worthy of note.
Keith Williams, mixing sound defence with controlled aggression, then took the score to 106 with young Matthew Daldorph, playing a sensible supporting role.
When Williams was out for a fine 44, Lewis Heap, who says he can’t bat at all, then shared 34 with Daldorph – believed to be the highest tenth wicket partnership in the 3rd XI’s history.
Daldorph was run out for an invaluable 16 while Heap’s share of the stand was 15 and included two mighty sixes.
It all gave the bowlers something to work with.
Breadsall, with only three defeats before this one, are clearly not a bad side and in L.Randall have an obviously decent player.
He made 43 after having taken 3-26 but Martin Dance took 5-25, well supported by Heap and Paddy Turner, two wickets each, and one for Williams.
Matches like this one are good for the players, especially the younger ones. More senior members might prefer less tense, more comprehensive victories, but the experience gained is vital.
The Sunday side remains top of their division as opponents Papplewick disappointingly forfeited the match.