By Maurice Ingham.
Wirksworth & Middleton’s time in Division Two came to an end with a pair of defeats on the final weekend of the season.
Saturday’s hosts Sandiacre seconds scored 84 runs from their last eleven overs in making 199-7.
James Brierley had another good bowl – 3-44 from his 14 overs – while Najaf Shah picked up two wickets with Stephen Lowe and Jack Allen one each.
In reply Andy Malia-Barlow and Stuart Poplar both scored 40s but Kevin Newbold, 5-29, saw Sandiacre home.
On Sunday at home to Langley Mill, Poplar again top-scored with 49. Mike Whittall made 31 and Malia-Barlow 33 in Wirksworth’s 173-8.
When Langley Mill were 40-3 in reply, a first home win of the season for W & M looked possible. Dan Lacey (34) and Danny Hanson (44) however added 74 for the fourth wicket and Paul Bailey’s 25 not out guided the visitors to victory with six overs to spare.
Najaf Shah took 3-36, Jack Pollard had 2-37 and Lowe 1-19 from eight overs.
The second XI ended with two draws, at home to Breadsall on Saturday and then at Belper Meadows on Sunday.
An opening stand of 81 for Breadsall saw Adam Smith make 40 before Sam Buck was run out for 62. Will Braisby then hit 48 as Breadsall notched 187-4. Jack Currell took 1-39 and there were two wickets for Liam Duffy.
After tea Doxey starred with the bat as well with 56, but at 103-2 Wirksworth lost three wickets and despite Peter Ashurst (23) and Jordan Duffy (19) scoring runs late on, they couldn’t quite reach the target required to win.
Champions Belper Meadows hit 187-8 on Sunday, Neil Horton with 52. Jack Currell took 3-28, Neil Doxey 2-27, Liam Duffy 2-41 and Max Marshall 1-34.
In reply, David Hopkinson (32), Peter Ashurst (33) and Duffy (27) scoring well but their side fell just eight runs short.
The thirds finished their season with a spirited performance against promoted Riddings who made 181-7, W&M ending just seven runs short of a win.
Mike Harwood carried his bat with a fine undefeated 60, while Riddings’ brave reply was kept in check by decent bowling with Jason and Harry Wanford, Stuart Wheeldon and Bradbury among the wickets.