North Essex Cricket League

So the cricket season can finally begin, now the football circus is complete – well for two weeks at least, before the next football season starts ! There are just the six games to report on from this week, with shrewd fixture secretaries generally avoiding the World Cup Final date. The headlines are in the T20 competition where defending T20 champions Wivenhoe, have managed to do a Germany, and have been eliminated at the group stage following defeat at Ipswich on Thursday. On Sunday in Division Two, there were two high scoring run chases, as Braintree chased down Abberton’s 300 for 9, and Chappel & Wakes Colne were successful in their chase of Witham’s 261 for 6. The match between Springfield and Great Totham was postponed with both clubs looking for an alternative T20 date. In Division Three, Kelvedon got back to winning way with a 52 run win at Coggeshall in a game reduced to 20 overs per side. Finally, Little Bardfield Village made it two from two in the T20 West Division with a three wicket success over Galleywood. There were no centuries this week, although Abberton’s Elliott Mann (96) and Matt Sullivan (93) and Witham’s Forster Mutizwa (99) all succumbed in the nineties. Alex Terry of Abberton claimed the bowling performance of the week with 6 for 53 in his sides defeat at Braintree.

Read more: Week 13 (July 15th) - T20 champions Wivenhoe out at the group stage

A hot summers day on the back of England World Cup euphoria, saw plenty of runs and some excellent individual performances on Sunday. In Division One, Clacton are the new leaders following a home victory over Galleywood, while Copdock & OI made it back to back wins with a tremendous run chase at Mistley. In Division Two, Witham missed the chance of closing the gap on Halstead and Springfield with a 146 run defeat at Great Totham. Braintree are off the bottom following victory at Chappel & Wakes Colne, while Abberton scored heavily in their win over Eight Ash Green which condemns the Green to the bottom of the division. In Division Three, Cavaliers kept the pressure on leaders Stebbing, who were not in action, with a win over Kelvedon. While Real Oddies are keeping Cavaliers on their toes by maintaining the chase in third place with a win over Boxted. West Bergholt scored a much needed win over Coggeshall, with debutant Greg Wilson starring with an unbeaten half century and the best bowling performance of the season, so far, with 7 for 17. There were five centurions this weekend, with Dan White 180 for Abberton, and James Parker 155no for Eight Ash Green both compiling the biggest hundreds in the same game at The Brow. Fowad Murtaza (137) for Cavaliers, Sam Webb-Snowling (107no) and Carl Lees (106) for Braintree were the other centurions. Clacton’s Dave Fitzpatrick claimed the second successive fivefor for Clacton bowlers with his 5 for 50, while Jake Foley claimed four catches at the wicket in Colchester & E.E. T20 success over Mistley on Thursday.

Read more: Week 12 (July 8th) - Hot, hot, hot and plenty of runs

It seems a long time ago that we were despairing of the ‘Beast from the East’, as the prolonged heat wave continued into first weekend of July. Thankfully, all nine matches went ahead with no concessions, although the heat appears to have tipped one team over the edge, as Great Totham conceded their match against Braintree with eight overs remaining ! Great Horkesley & Lexden should be commended for their effort in Division Three, playing with eight men and claiming seven points at Boxted, after being subjected to a hot afternoon in the field first. In Division One, there were wins for Clacton and Copdock & OI, the former climbing up to second place. In Division Two, unbeaten leaders Halstead made it five from five, while second placed Springfield are not letting up on the chase with an eight wicket win at Eight Ash Green. Braintree claimed their first win of the season, with victory over Great Totham, in what is probably a first for the North Essex Cricket League – a team walking off. In Division Three, it is a magnificent seven for leaders Stebbing, who strolled to victory at West Bergholt. Cavaliers are a distant second, following a seven wicket success over Coggeshall, while Boxted claimed the win in the bottom of the table clash. In the T20 West division, Little Bardfield Village started their 2018 campaign with an impressive eight wicket victory over previously unbeaten Kelvedon & Feering, whom must now wait for the outcome of other results to see if they progress. Individually there were four centuries this week, with three coming at Halstead – Joe Morris (110) and Josh King (112no) scoring maiden centuries for Halstead, and Michael Godwin (108) responding for Witham. At Boxted veteran opener Steve Philpott (105) posted three figures in his sides win over Great Horkesley & Lexden. Only the one fiverfor, came from Clacton’s Bradley Pitts (5 for 47) in their win over Mistley, while there were four wicket performances from Springfield’s Martin Southwell (4 for 3), Braintree’s Joel Ainsley (4 for 33) and Prakash Day (4 for 35) of Boxted in their sides respective wins.

Read more: Week 11 (July 1st) - Magnificent seven for Stebbing in Division Three

Just the two games could compete against the attraction of a thrilling World Cup match between England and Panama ! Has to be said the one wicket victory by England to make it 5-0 over Australia was more of a sporting spectacle. Four of the games scheduled for Sunday, have been re-arranged for later in the season. Braintree conceded their T20 West match at Coggeshall. While in the 40 over competition there was a first win of the season for Abberton in Division Two, at home to Chappel & Wakes Colne, while in Division Three, Cavaliers have gone second following their victory over Boxted. On Thursday evening there were two games in the T20 East Division, with Colchester & E.E making the headlines with a seven wicket victory over champions Wivenhoe. Mistley started their campaign with a 165 run victory over 7 Para. The standout individual performance of the week belonged to Colchester & E.E Michael Cursons who struck a forty ball century in the sides T20 victory over Wivenhoe, eventually ending undefeated on 109. Mistley’s Stuart Dove also recorded a T20 century with 106 against 7 Para. Matthew Bibby claimed the best bowling performance of the week in the same game for Mistley, returning 5 for 3, which included a hat trick.

Read more: Week 10 (June 24th) - Cursons forty ball century sees T20 champions Wivenhoe defeated

A full programme in Division Two saw Halstead extend their winning start to four with a ten wicket victory at Braintree. Second placed Springfield and third place Witham remain in close contention, following wins at Chappel & Wakes Colne and Eight Ash Green respectively. While Abberton remain bottom following a defeat at Great Totham. In Division Three, Stebbing are the only unbeaten side left, recording their sixth straight win over previously unbeaten Kelvedon. Real Oddies are up to second following a home success against Cavaliers, and there was a first win of the campaign for West Bergholt courtesy of a Great Horkesley & Lexden concession, who remain rooted to bottom of the table. The one game in Division One, saw Copdock concede their home game to Clacton. The T20 East Division got underway on Thursday, with champions Wivenhoe running up 247 for 0 in their win over 7 Para. The army side were back in action on Sunday, in a three way festival at Castle Park, and came second against both Colchester and Ipswich, while the final match between the two winners during the day ended in a tie. There were individual centuries, for Brendan Louw (123no) and Jakob Kelly (103no) for Wivenhoe in their T20 game with 7 Para, while on Sunday Forster Mutizwa posted the second highest score of the season with an unbeaten 170 for Witham against Eight Ash Green. Springfield’s Noah Pothen (110no) scored the fourth century of the week in his sides victory over Chappel & Wakes Colne.

Read more: Week 9 (June 17th) - Halstead and Stebbing remain unbeaten, and a T20 thriller at Castle Park

Not often you see all the home sides win in a week in the NECL, but the maximum points went to all eight home sides this weekend. Most of the action this week came in the third division with a full programme scheduled, however, leaders Stebbing picked up an easy twenty points following Coggeshall’s concession, to reach 100 points for the season. Real Oddies are up to second following an easy victory over winless West Bergholt, Cavaliers are third with a six wicket win over eight man Great Horkesley & Lexden, while Kelvedon remain unbeaten after they crushed Boxted. In Division One, Mistley eased to a nine wicket success over second placed Colchester & East Essex at New Road. In Division Two, Witham are up to third after winning their derby match with Great Totham in comprehensive fashion, while there was a tighter affair at Eight Ash Green, where the hosts overcame visitors Chappel & Wakes Colne by 11 runs. In the T20, there is a first win this season for Coggeshall who beat Galleywood by 17 runs. Individually, there were three centuries this week all coming in Division Three, Ryan Vickery (113) and Dan Wheeler (104no) for Kelvedon, and Toby Nickell-Lean (101no) for Great Horkesley & Lexden. Just the single fiverfer came from Galleywood’s Sam Adams in the T20 game against Coggeshall, where he claimed 5 for 33.

Read more: Week 8 (June 10th) - Victory for all eight home sides, as Stebbing reach a century of points