Melton through in cup
Great Melton's Sunday side won by two runs in a closely-fought encounter with Ashmanhaugh in the Challenge Cup first round. It was evident that, due to the heavy rainfall of the previous couple of days, both skippers would have liked to bowl on a damp, soft, soggy wicket so it was no surprise that Ash's skipper inserted Marcus Godbold's side into bat upon winning.
Great Melton's Sunday side won by two runs in a closely-fought encounter with Ashmanhaugh in the Challenge Cup first round.
It was evident that, due to the heavy rainfall of the previous couple of days, both skippers would have liked to bowl on a damp, soft, soggy wicket so it was no surprise that Ash's skipper inserted Marcus Godbold's side into bat upon winning.
Melton started promisingly despite the conditions and few chances were given from Richard Wood (16) and Tom Wilson (18). However, they were not able to capitalise and departed in quick succession.
Godbold (29) and Matt Clarke set about building Melton's total off poor bowling.
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They started to do this until J Everett (1-17) started finding some extremely variable bounce from the pitch, leaving Clarke and Godbold scraping for runs. Godbold eventually departed to Everett trying to force the issue. Enter Sunday team debutant Olly Harris (28), who supported Clarke with good running between the wickets and three boundaries of his own before eventually being run out after putting on a partnership well over 50 at a crucial time.
This left Tony Alborough to finish the innings with the impressive Clarke who hit 71 not out (nine fours and a six) on a difficult pitch. Melton totalled 184 for 4.
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Ash's reply started poorly. Everett departed in the first over to ever-improving Ryan Hayward (1-36) and slow progress was an understatement as Ashmanhaugh were 20 off the first 10 overs thanks to some excellent bowling from Melton's impressive opening partnership of Hayward and Jack McCurley, who was bowling with good pace. R Gant (40) decided to counter attack the change bowlers Leo DeSalis (0-35) and Harris (3-28) with T Warminger (35) eventually joining him in the 'across the line' approach after a slow start. Both fell to Harris thanks to some tight, stump to stump bowling. Four, five, six and eight fell quickly for Ashmanhaugh thanks to some excellent fielding from George King and George Ducker, who were extremely quick on the square all game, pressuring batsmen to hit big shots and paying the price as Tom Wilson despatched the middle order.
Harris took the wicket of Aussie skipper Nation, R Bean (41) and A Blackburn (23) were not going to go down quite so quietly and some decent running between the wickets and some sensible boundary hitting took them to within nine runs to win off the last over.
Bean smashed a four off the second ball but it wasn't enough, though, as Ryan Hayward brilliantly keep his nerve to concede three off the last three balls with all of Melton's fielders on the boundary.