Winterton keep hopes alive

AFTER some recent disappointing results Winterton faced league leaders Aldborough re-quiring a win to keep themselves in the Norfolk League Division One title hunt.

AFTER some recent disappointing results Winterton faced league leaders Aldborough re-quiring a win to keep themselves in the Norfolk League Division One title hunt.

Winterton gained an important win which keeps the remainder of the season very interesting with all three teams at the top of the division in with a chance of winning the section.

Aldborough asked Winterton to make first use of what looked to be a good wicket. The Aldborough opening attack exerted early pressure on Clarke and Austin, who was bowled for nought by a ball from Reeve that cut back to hit the top of off stump.

The experienced Clarke and Geoff Roper gradually took the score up 58 in the 21st over when Clarke (18) was caught in two minds and lobbed a gentle catch off Barnard's bowling.

Martin Witheridge took the attack to the bowling. In the next nine overs 66 runs were added and Roper also began to score more freely. Witheridge looked as if he was going on to a big score when he was caught for 29 off the persevering Nichols to leave the innings poised at 113-3.

Having announced his retirement at the end of the season Dan Crawley arrived at the wicket to play probably his best innings for the first team.

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He played shots all round the wicket and maintained the momentum.

Roper continued to hold the innings together and the pair pushed Winterton onto a challenging total. Roper moved onto 50 with a boundary and looked likely to bat all afternoon. The pair added 81 in 14 overs, but having seen the score up to 194 tiredness overtook Roper and he was run out for a fine 89 just 11 short of a well-deserved hundred.

Crawley went on to an important 52 not out and with a score of 211-4 Winterton had set their opponents a challenging total.

Winterton's Richie Reeder and Ben Webb both bowled a tight line and length and were well supported in the field.

Reeder had the dangerous Allan caught by Austin at mid-on for four and in his second over the Norfolk League player of the month for July Tom Roper bowled Fell for five.

Webb also drew a false shot from Cooper to have him caught for 14. At 38-3 the game was evenly poised with Nichols playing his shots and scoring quickly and his partner Reeve more than capable of playing a big innings.

The pair added 56 runs in quick time but Richie Larner was then settling into his work and began pegging things back. Bowling his usual wicket-to-wicket deliveries and mixing his pace, he had Reeve lbw for 21 and then bowled Nichols for 43 to stop Aldborough's reply in its tracks.

The run-rate rose rapidly and with Larner exerting a stranglehold the game began to swing towards Winterton. None of the batsmen were able to dominate the bowling and Larner further accounted for Bacon, Barnard and Cannon (Barnard being very well caught by Webb at deep mid-off) to finish with 5-28 in an unchanged 12-over spell.

There was a brief flourish from Plumb who ended 32 not out but a run out and another victim for Tom Roper finished Aldborough's innings at 166 in the 43rd over.