Belton stunned by rock-bottom Strand

Belton’s stop-start season staggered and slumped to defeat against Norfolk League Division Two’s rock-bottom Overstrand at Southtown Common on Saturday.

Put into bat on a slow and still spongy wicket, the home side made it to 40 in ten overs for the loss of opener George Savoury. A promising start. Skipper Ali smacked a quick 13 and promptly perished.

Two for 64 from 17. Not bad. Adam Savoury played the outstanding innings for Belton making 49 valuable runs. Quite good. Cameron Nichols added a quick 36 near the end and Belton posted 189 for 9 from 45 overs. Usually a winning score. D Eliot’s 3-37 was the pick of the Overstrand bowling.

In reply, Overstrand had difficulty scoring in the face of accurate seam bowling from Sajid Ali and Cameron Nichols. The staggered to 25 for 2 from 12 overs with Ali picking up the wickets of R West for 6 and L West for 15. Excellent.

The visitors equation became 165 runs from 33 overs – at 5 an over. 5 an over – and 5 runs every over for 33 overs. Belton in the driving seat.

George Savoury took a stunning catch at short mid-wicket to dismiss D. Eliot for 36 from the bowling of Harry Chanchalani. Meanwhile, Paul Parkin amused himself by battering the hapless Belton attack for 80 runs. M Amm chipped in with 27 and T Reedman joined in the fun with 17 not out. Chugging along at six an over was no challenge to the rejuventated visitors and they ran out winners by six wickets in only 40 overs. Saj Ali took 2-16 for Belton but the supporting cast was not up to the task.

In one of the strangest games of cricket ever at the picturesque Brooke Park ground, the home side ran out easy winners in the end against a Belton side who enjoyed their day in the sun but somehow lost the plot in the cricket match.

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Belton skipper Adam Savoury had no hesitation in asking Brooke to bat on what looked a good pitch but soft-ish under the thin crust on top. He was rewarded as Gavin Moar and Andy Bhardwaj put together a solid display of pace bowling.

Moar got the more wickets, three, but Bardwaj was very stingy with only 22 runs coming from his 10 overs. The support bowlers also performed well with George Savoury and Harry Chanchalani each taking a brace of wickets. Only J Andrews and A Westgate mastered the conditions to post the only two double figure scores in the home side’s innings. Brooke finished on a modest 114 from 35.5 overs.

After a splendid tea Belton set about knocking off the small total so they could adjourn to the hospitality of the clubhouse and bar. Ten of their batsmen refused to reach double figures. The first 23 overs produced 30 runs. Willing themselves forward batsmen tried to attack and only managed to run themselves out or get bowled. The last three batsmen perished for ducks. Brooke could not believe their good fortune as they ran out winners by 47 runs, bowling out the visitors in only 29 overs for a modest 67. S Block took 4 for 15 for the home side. Belton, meanwhile, sat forlornly in the clubhouse wondering what went wrong.