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Acle determined to regain top status

PUBLISHED: 15:27 02 September 2010 | UPDATED: 11:58 16 September 2010

ACLE hosted Alliance champions Downham needing maximum points to stand a chance of maintaining their Premier Division status.

The game finished with a winning draw for Acle who were relegated with a total of 201 points, a record haul for a relegated side.

ACLE hosted Alliance champions Downham needing maximum points to stand a chance of maintaining their Premier Division status.

The game finished with a winning draw for Acle who were relegated with a total of 201 points, a record haul for a relegated side.

No one in the Acle camp will argue that based on the whole season they deserved to go down. In the end there were too many mediocre performances mid season. If they had played the whole season as they did in the last few games they would have been nearer the top of the table rather than the bottom.

The good news is that after the game in a dressing room hearing, all the players committed to the club for the 2011 season and are already gearing up for an immediate return to the Premier League in 2012.

Due to the wet conditions and unsettled weather forecast, both captains agreed on a reduced-overs game. Downham elected to field first.

Acle lost Rob Porter early lbw to Stuart, but Huggins and Adam Munford steadied the ship. The wicket was favouring the bowling side, with Todd in particular moving the ball off the pitch.

Munford (21) was caught by Corbett off Yeates which brought Hugo Nel to the crease to join Huggins. The South African, playing his last competitive game for the club, creamed anything pitched up.

Downham's overseas player Cunningham with his off-spinners began to make inroads into the Acle batting. But Nel continued to bat positively and with support from Geoff Handley (17), clocked up his first league century for the club in fine style, and finished on 104 not out as Acle achieved maximum batting points with 205-8.

Downham began positively with Cunningham hitting by numbers but with great effect. Run machine Alex Stuart was dismissed early on by Newman but Patrick Yeates and Cunningham looked to be building a good platform.

Skipper Roberts was introduced to the attack and again made an immediate impact, dismissing Yeates, Gould and Todd and finishing with 3-44 from his 10 overs.

Downham went into the last over requiring 12 runs for victory with seven wickets down. The first three deliveries resulted in wickets for Newman, dismissing Stuart and Tansley, leaving the experienced Barnard.

His first ball lobbed up just short of mid-wicket, the second just short of slip, and the third brought big but unsuccessful lbw appeal.

CAT Car Sale MoM: Hugo Nel, a true gent and a truly tremendous 104 not out.


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