Relieved Wirksworth celebrate first win -- by one run!

Joe Greenhalgh, who produced a fine bowling performance to help Wirksworth to victory.
Joe Greenhalgh, who produced a fine bowling performance to help Wirksworth to victory.

Relieved Wirksworth and Middleton celebrated their first outright victory of the season by the narrowest of margins to lift themselves off the bottom of the table.

Just one run separated Wirksworth from fellow strugglers Rolleston in a tight and tense finish to their Derbyshire County League, Premier Division match.

But they weren’t complaining as the 27 points gained were enough to take them out of the bottom-two relegation zone.

Incredibly, a paltry total of 107 proved enough, thanks to some inspired bowling by Joe Greenhalgh, Rory Overmeyer and Ben Perry-Taylor.

Greenhalgh took 4-21 from 15 overs, Overmeyer 4-39 from 13.5 overs and Perry-Taylor 2-31 from 15 overs as Rolleston plunged from 57-2 to 81-9.

Amazingly, amid the wicket-tumbling carnage, the home team’s opener, Gareth Marshall, remained at the crease, and he proceeded to control a last-wicket partnership of 25 with last man Jamie Wagstaff that threatened to break Wirksworth’s hearts.

But Marshall, who stayed for 153 balls and ended on 45no (four fours), could do nothing when Wagstaff was bowled by Overmeyer with the fifth delivery of the 51st over with Rolleston’s total on 106.

Earlier, Wirksworth had also failed to make the most of a solid start, engineered by opener Charlie Mellor, who hit 28, including five fours.

That proved to be the highest contribition of the innings and when Mellor was bowled, it was clear his side were in big trouble on 57-6.

Only one other batsman, Jack Ritchie (19, four fours), could muster double figures as the Rolleston bowlers made hay, led by Alex Brown, with a return of 5-30 from 15 admirable overs, and his new-ball partner, Graham Dent, who took 3-40 from 11 overs, including the scalp of Mellor.

This Saturday, Wirksworth are at home to Ticknall.