Cricket season under way

HALVERGATE had an indifferent start to their Alliance Division Four season away to Bradenham A, holding out for a losing draw.Halvergate chose to field and opening bowlers Tim Crane and Alan Booth conceded only 14 runs from the first eight overs with Booth accounting for one of the Bradenham openers.

HALVERGATE had an indifferent start to their Alliance Division Four season away to Bradenham A, holding out for a losing draw.

Halvergate chose to field and opening bowlers Tim Crane and Alan Booth conceded only 14 runs from the first eight overs with Booth accounting for one of the Bradenham openers.

However, I Gibb (60) in a devastating 10-over period saw the score race to 79. Halvergate looked to regain some control by taking the pace off the ball.

Kelvin London, who had stepped out of retirement for the day, bowled with guile and he and Aaron Brooks slowed the scoring.

Bradenham skipper I Moody batted steadily and held the innings together as Halvergate picked up two more wickets. With the total on 150, Moody fell to Booth for 51 with 10 overs to go. The innings closed on 174-7.

Brooks bowled through to the death to finish with 3-31. The bowlers were well supported in the field with keeper S Utting excelling with two sharp stumping and no byes conceded.

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Halvergate's reply got away to the worst possible start as two wickets fell in the first over. K London batted confidently but was caught for 13 as he mistimed a pull. P Hill also looked good until he too was caught for 14. Two further wickets fell in quick succession as Halvergate floundered on 47-6 after 28 overs.

With any chance of a victory gone, Steve Cooke and Tim Crane dropped anchor and batted through the next 15 overs with the addition of a further 35 runs. It was only the lure of a batting point that tempted Cooke into a rash shot as he was trapped lbw for 39. Crane batted through to score 17 not out as the innings closed on 92.

Great Yarmouth beat Drayton by seven wickets in Norfolk League Division One.

Yarmouth won the toss and asked Drayton to make first use of a slightly green wicket. Injury and retirement saw Ellis and Ruddick take over as the new-ball partnership and they bowled with good pace and accuracy.

The Drayton batsmen showed their intent to play shots which set the tone for the entire innings and briefly threatened to break free when they took 10 from an over. Control was quickly restored and then Richard Ruddick forced the breakthrough finding the edge of Wright (9), Ruddick (2-34) struck again two overs later with the other opener Hawes (21) departing in the same manner.

Denny led the counter-attack with a pair of sixes. Ellis, bowling unchanged without any luck, finally got into the wickets with only five balls remaining in his spell as he bowled Reeve for 11. Kay (0) had only four balls to see off the opener but missed a big shot from the last ball of the over to give Ellis

(2-28) his second wicket.

Big hitter Michael Mario-Ghae sent his first ball for six closely followed by another. He threatened to turn the game on its head with a rapid 27, with 26 in boundaries, before Oxborough bowled him. Oxborough also accounted for Denny and Drayton were rocking slightly at 126-6.

Cockrill was into the wickets immediately, Fitzsimmons diving full length to clutch a catch. Some defiant late-order hitting saw the home side reach 164 before Oxborough (5-49) completed his rout of the lower order which featured a sharp catch from Nichols in the gully.

Yarmouth concentrated on working the ball around. Nicholls and Sole got the innings off to a steady start.

Mario-Ghae had found the edge on two occasions but the ball had flown well wide of any fielder but third time Nicholls (11) was caught at first slip.

Derry injected some pace into the innings and the second-wicket pair added 47 in good time before Sole (38) fell to a fine catch on the point boundary.

Hak and Derry added a further 40 highlighted by Derry hitting a six over one of the longest boundaries. Derry's knock came to an end when Burgess beat the bat. With 11 overs and seven wickets remaining to get 51 runs Yarmouth were favourites for the win and any doubt was swiftly removed by Hak and some fluid stroke play.

Ably supported by Simon Ruddick (9 not out), Hak brought up his half century and the win with another boundary to finish on 51no.

Burton Arms Man of the Match: Steven Hak with an honourable mention to Tim Oxborough for his five-wicket haul.

WINTERTON A made a poor start to their Norfolk League Division Four season, falling to a surprise defeat to last season's 'wooden spoon' holders Hales A.

The young and old of Hales outplayed Winterton in all areas. After a perfect start, taking five wickets in the first 10 overs, Winterton relaxed and let a huge, match-winning partnership develop between the experienced Plummer and the young player Read.

Poor bowling and fielding yielded boundaries, dropped catches and

mis-fields. The batsman used the short boundary to maximum effect with help from wayward lines by the bowlers.

Replying to 145 the boys made a good start, making 33 before Lawes departed. His partner S Drake soon followed and that heralded a predictable collapse with only Whichelow making double figures.

A positive outcome was Gerry Guide who took 3-18 on his debut.

Fielding practice and some self belief should improve things.

Martham A (5 pts) lost to newcomers Reepham and Salle (24 pts) by 116 runs in Norfolk League Division Eight.

Skipper Dave Etheridge put the visitors into bat on a helpful bowling track and they made steady progress before they lost two quick wickets with the score on 57.

A match-winning partnership of 93 between Peter Minns (65) and Phil Harwood (57) took the total to 150 before both fell within a few balls of each other. The innings finished on 204-7. Pick of the Martham bowlers were Chris Shales with 3-33 off his 11 overs and Terry Punchard with 2-41 from his 12.

The hosts needed a good start but lost early wickets with only opener Andrew Whittington (24) and Aaron Kemp (14) making any significant contributions.

With the total on 61-7 the match was over as a contest with Etheridge (16 not out) and youngster Ethan Scally (6 not out) putting on 27 for the eighth wicket to finish a well-beaten side.

ROLLESBY A produced a fine all-round performance to defeat Horsford C by 94 runs in Norfolk League Division Six.

Horsford asked Rollesby to bat on a good pitch that assisted both bowlers and batsman.

The Rollesby opening partnership of Alan Fakes and Mick Pearce initially grafted hard against some tight bowling to later reap the rewards of a 105-run partnership to set the foundation for a commanding total.

Pearce fell to a good catch as he tried to increase the scoring rate for a well constructed 36. Jimmy Catchpole (21) then joined Fakes for a partnership of 49 before Catchpole was bowled trying to force the pace. The pursuit for quick runs brought the downfall of Fakes for an excellent 64 and Gerdes (8) before George Barnden (18 no) and Mark Hewitt (11 no) saw Rollesby to maximum batting points with the innings closing on 201-4.

Horsford were fielding a very young side and never looked like achieving the target of 202. Only George Aldridge (21) and Alistair Ranns made double figures as Horsford were bowled out for 107 in the 26th over.

Horsford skipper Ranns scored a fluent 52 as he took the attack to the Rollesby bowlers.

The pick of the Rollesby bowlers was Oscar Gerdes who picked up five wickets for 22 runs and he was ably supported by Jimmy Catchpole and Ryan Lewis who both picked up

two wickets. George Barnden bowled with pace and movement whilst

Devon Ainley had his first bowl in a Rollesby shirt.

Rollesby took the opportunity to play some new young players. Devon Ainley and Ryan Lewis acquitted themselves very well on their debuts.

This was a comprehensive win by Rollesby A in a season that will be testing.

Man of the match: Alan Fakes for his 64 whose cautious application in the early stages of the innings ensured that Rollesby reaped the benefits when batting became easier.

Special mention for Oscar Gerdes for his five wickets for 22 and the whole side for an excellent performance in the field.

SOUTH Walsham drew with Eaton on Sunday in miserable conditions. With a wet pitch skipper Paul Woods put Eaton into bat.

Butcher and Duke added 95 for the first wicket before Butcher fell for 49, well caught by Watkins off Belton.

The Walsham bowlers stuck well to their task with youngsters Jack Belton and Dan Scales showing a great deal of promise. The second wicket fell when Andy Scales took a skier to dismiss Duke for 71. Crowe hit 37 not out as Eaton declared on 193-3 off 50 overs.

Eaton took an early wicket as Scales fell for five. Watkins batted well for 49 ably supported by Chris Woods for 20 but struggled to maintain the required run rate for victory. A rain delay then completely put paid to any chance Walsham had for victory and all the batsmen could do was to play out time.

Jack Belton batted well to score 22 not out as Walsham finished on 110-5 from 36 overs.

Upton White Horse MoM: Jack Belton, good effort with bat and ball.

BLUNDESTON entertained Frettenham on the Somerleyton ground they now call home.

Upon winning the toss Frettenham captain Davison elected to bat first. However the Frettenham batsmen never really got to terms with Blundeston's front-line bowlers, falling away to 67 off 27 overs.

Elliot Gooch claimed 3-13, skipper Talbot 3-9, Mark Chapman 3-5 each off seven overs. Owen Shuttleworth took the other wicket, conceding 29 runs in six overs.

Sam Goffin and Saurabh Verma looked very patient but with the score on 37 Verma thick-edged one straight back to Websdale for a patient 13.

Lewis Chapman (2no) supported Goffin (46no) who hit the ball to all ends of the park, including a six which sailed over the mid-wicket fence. The two batsmen saw Blundeston home by nine wickets in the 22nd over.

A big thanks to everyone who helped in the preparations of the new ground especially Gary Colman (head groundsman) and Blundeston's sponsors. Next, week Blundeston travel to Rollesby A.

BLUNDESTONA: Marking the next step in the club's exciting development, Blundeston's new young A team travelled to Maltings Meadow, Bungay, to play their first ever Norfolk League Division Eight league match against newly-formed Gillingham.

T Daplyn lost the toss, which proved costly, the side bowled out for 93 with the ball flying around alarmingly off the pitch. J Bessey adapted to the conditions best of all and made 36 before being run out.

After the tea interval Gillingham came out to bat on what seemed to be a totally different pitch. With only 16 overs bowled Gillingham won by seven wickets.

For a first outing for a new and young team, this was a good all-round performance on a very difficult wicket and against a much stronger opposition. Next, Hemsby A at home.

Blundeston CC has youth teams at U10, U11, U13 and U15. Youth coaching by qualified ECB and CRB-checked coaches takes place at Somerleyton playing field on Sunday mornings from 10am to 12.

Any new players are always welcome. For more information call Belinda on 01493 667694.