North Essex Cricket League

Weekly Round-Up

Week 11 - June 25

The halfway point of the season, and after the results at the weekend, Wivenhoe possess the only unbeaten record in the 40 over league, as Halstead and Braintree both suffered their first reverses. In Division One, Frinton made it five top flight wins on the bounce with a 20 run win at home to Mistley in a high scoring match which lifts the Seasiders up to third. Eight Ash Green claimed their first victory of the season at the seventh attempt with a narrow victory at Great Horkesley & Lexden. There are new leaders in Division Two, after second placed Copdock & OI ended Halstead’s unbeaten start with a seven wicket win at Star Stile. Chappel & Wakes Colne are just behind Halstead on net run rate, following a 26 run win at Witham. In Division Three, leaders Springfield were comfortable winners at Harwich, while third placed Abberton got back to winning ways with a six wicket success at West Bergholt. Kelvedon won a low scoring match at Chappel to climb to fourth. One game in Division Four, but it served up plenty of runs as Real Oddies prevailed over previously unbeaten Braintree by three runs in a game that witnessed 521 runs. In the T20, there was a chastening debut for 7 Para RHA as Little Bardfield Village completed their second win in the East Division, by racking up the highest ever team score in the T20 competition with a massive 255 for 4. Unfortunately, the fiasco of the West Division continues as Great Bentley conceded to Wivenhoe, and have also served early notice that they will concede to Ipswich next week – Ipswich will therefore have completed their group games without having to take to the field.
Individually there were no centuries and just one five wicket haul this weekend, the best batting performance of the weekend belonging to Malien Mudalige (91) for Real Oddies at Braintree. Kelvedon’s Thata Tshose claimed 5 for 33 in his sides victory at Chappel & WC 2nds. There was also a sensational partnership in the T20 by Little Bardfield brothers Matt and Tom Graham who smashed 104 from 35 balls in their teams victory over 7 Para.

Division One

Champions Frinton made it five wins on the bounce in the top flight, with a high scoring game at Ashlyn’s Road against Mistley. The win sees Frinton climb to third. Kemar Smith (27) and Tom Sinclair (35) set the Seasiders on their way with a rapid opening stand of 64. After their departure, Tom Benn played the anchor role with an unbeaten 76 from 91 balls, whilst there were rapid knocks from Alfie Wells (29 from 31) and Sam Brynes (45 from 38) in partnerships of 66 for the third wicket, and 76 for the fourth wicket. Dominic Stockdale and Patrick Barker added cameos at the end of the innings at Frinton closed at an imposing 261 for 5. James Stamatis gave the Swans encouragement in their reply, smashing 68 from 35 balls in an opening stand of 82 with George Hutton. However, his wicket saw the game swing towards Frinton, as Kemar Smith (2 for 35 from 9) and Lewis Catlow (2 for 25 from 9) made inroads into the top order. Dylan Day (79 from 87) kept the Swans in the game, and a hard hitting 38 from Tim Scott, which included three sixes got the visitors to within twenty of the target.

There was a gripping game at Mile End, where visitors Eight Ash Green broke their duck, by clinching a win from the jaws of defeat against Great Horkesley & Lexden. A century opening stand between Ollie Stovell (65) and Will Spicer (42) looked to have set the foundations for a big Green total. However, Shaun Hassan (4 for 26) and Graeson Laitt (4 for 39) pulled the hosts back into the game, and the Green were restricted to 169 for 9. In reply Jon Jones (35 from 42 balls) gave the Saxons a rapid start. The hard hitting middle order all contributed with scores in the twenties, with Luke Conway (29 from 22) typically aggressive, and it seemed that with 14 runs required and four wickets in hand the home side would prevail. The stumping of debutant Steve Smith (25) from the ever-agile Neil Brinded precipitated a clatter of wickets as GH&L were bowled out for 159. Jake Harris (3 for 53) claimed a three wicket haul, and there was a brace for William Spicer (2 for 31) and Matt Parker (2 for 32), his second wicket the last to fall, to courtesy of a flying catch from the aforementioned Brinded.

Division Two
Halstead were beaten for the first time this season and are replaced at the top of Division Two by their conquerors Copdock & OI. The young Halstead side were reduced to 57 for 4, with Harry Pritchard (26) top scoring, as Daniel Leggett claimed two early wickets on his way to figures of 3 for 48 from 9.
Some rear guard batting from numbers eight and nine, Aaron Read (32 from 27, including two sixes) and Ed Clark (30no from 24) ensured that Halstead got up to a competitive total, reaching 182 at the beginning of the final over. Nathan Scarff (2 for 20), Lewis Millions (2 for 26) and Jamie Smith (2 for 46) both claimed a double in a good all round bowling performances from the visitors. In reply, openers Sam Webb-Snowling (78 from 45 balls) and Leggett (48) smashed a rapid century partnership (110) to put Copdock well in command. An unbeaten fourth wicket stand of 45, between Donald Mlambo (14no) and Jack Knight (36no) then secured the points inside 25 overs.

Chappel and Wakes Colne kept the heat on the top two with a 26 run victory at Witham. After an early wicket, Chappel made good progress through a second wicket stand of 93 between makeshift opener Ross Wyatt (46) and Jack Perfect-Brown (63). However, the normally reliable Chappel middle order failed to fire, with Carl Bragg (3 for 26) and Cal Taylor (3 for 33) taking wickets they slipped uneasily to 146 for 7. Sam King (11) and Harry Carter (18) combined to get them up to a respectable score of 190 for 9. The Witham innings mirrored the Chappel innings as an early wicket was followed by a good second wicket stand as Michael Godwin (45) and Michael Glynn (33) put on 71, before Sam King (3 for 42) claimed both scalps. Steady bowling in the middle order from Nigel Swain (0 for 25 from 9) meant that the home side required 70 runs from the last 9 overs. L Brown (20) and Carl Bragg (28) were the only other players to top twenty for Witham, as Ross Wyatt (3 for 43) and Harry Carter (2 for 18 from 9) wrapped up the match with the hosts bowled out for 165.

Division Three
Leaders Springfield made the long journey to bottom of the table Harwich & Dovercourt, and came away with another maximum, in a match played well within in the spirit of the game. Batting first after winning the toss Andrew Blundell (69) supported by Ben Spray and James Gooday gave the Chelmsford based side a solid foundation. Shan Thevasakayam (79) then weighed in an excellent innings as Springfield closed at 229 for 5. Harvey Bennett (2 for 33) was the most successful of the Harwich bowlers. In reply, only Nev Mathur (62) and Jack Newell (32) scored any runs of significance, as two youngsters starred in the bowling effort for Springfield. Under 18 Jamie Trimm opened up with an excellent bowling spell that returned 3 for 13 from 7, while Under 14 Ted Ashurst, in his first year in senior cricket claimed 3 for 12 from 6 at the latter end of the innings as Harwich were restricted to 153 for 9 from their 40 overs.

Third placed Abberton got back to winning ways with a six wicket success at West Bergholt. Only three Bergholt players reached double figures in their total of 82 all out from almost 38 overs. Opener Dan Grice (28) top scored, while Arnav Thayur (18) and James Banks (10) were the other batsmen to get to double figures. Mike Booker (3 for 8 from 8.5) and Dave Booker (1 for 15 from 9) bowled miserly opening spells for the Lions, while Chris Pettit (3 for 21), Simon Berger (1 for 20) and Ryan Savill (2 for 17) provided excellent backup. In reply, Abberton were in trouble early on, being four down for not many, as Oliver Banks (3 for 26) and Joe Smith (1 for 20) took the early wickets. Nick Allflatt (25no) and Dave Booker (26no) then combined to put on an unbeaten fifth wicket stand to see the visitors to victory inside 15 overs.

A strange game at Chappel saw the bowlers on top in a low scoring game. Batting first Kelvedon were restricted to 135 for 6 from their 40 overs, of which Tom Potter (44) sop scored, with opener Alfie Long (29) the next highest scorer. Unsurprisingly, all the Chappel bowlers returned respectable figures, with the most successful being Rebecca Wilson (2 for 31 from 9). Given the relatively low target, Chappel could be confident of chasing it down, and at 75 for 2 that confidence would have been increased. However, four wickets for one run put a different complexion on the game and with Thata Tshose (5 for 33) and George Curtis (4 for 22) amongst the wickets the hosts slumped to 110 all out with almost 14 overs in hand. Robin Carter (26) top scored for Chappel.

Division Four
Most entertaining game of the afternoon came in Division Four, where unbeaten Braintree were beaten by 3 runs by visitors Real Oddies, in a game that boasted over 520 runs. Pete Pearson (69) gave the Oddies a solid start with a half century opening stand with Jamie Aitken. His demise at 107, saw Craig Watts (42) join Malien Mudalige in a century (101) stand for the third wicket. Mudalige, went on to top score with 91, before becoming the third of Grace Poole’s wickets (3 for 54), as Oddies closed at an impressive 262 for 6. Skipper Malcolm Fullgrabe (60) got the Dolphins off to a solid enough start, sharing stands with Robbie Spalding (28) and Lee Fullgrabe (20), before becoming fourth man out on 126. Scott Rees (2 for 59) claimed two middle order wickets and a run out by Craig Watts, put the visitors in the ascendancy. Rory Ainsley (59) and Chris Leech (61no, including 3 sixes) then put Braintree back in the match, before Ainsley fell agonisingly short of the target at 259 for 7.

T20 - West
Little Bardfield Village are on the cusp of qualification for their second Finals Day, following a comprehensive win at Church End over newcomers 7 Para RHA. After being put into bat Little Bardfield scored rapidly, with Daryl Hymas (31 from 31) and Ed Hitchock (51 from 32) putting on 70 for the first wicket. The only failure in the Bardfield line up, Ian Catley, made a short but productive visit to the crease hitting 8 from 2 balls before holing out. The Graham brothers then took the assault to the army side, with a fourth wicket stand of 104 from just 35 balls, before Tom was bowled for 46 from 18 balls. Matt Graham went on to complete an unbeaten 83 from 32 balls, including five sixes, and Will Slemmings added a final flourish with 17 from four blows as Bardfield closed with a record T20 score under their belt of 255 for 4. Phil Wright (2 for 58) was the most successful of the 7 Para bowlers, who with the exception of Sean Solomon (0 for 24 from 4) all took some tap. In reply, 7 Para reached 126 for 7, with Ben Cadman (36) the only player to top twenty. Tommy Cooper (3 for 20) and Joe Owen (2 for 24 from 4) were the most successful Bardfield bowlers as the home side run out winners by 129 runs.

T20 - East
Wivenhoe are on the verge of qualification from the East Division, after Great Bentley conceded their scheduled fixture at Rectory Road on Sunday. Bentley have also conceded next Sunday’s match at Ipswich.

Centuries and Five Wickets
Thata Tshose 5 -- 33 Kelvedon v. Chappel & WC 2nd

NECL Performance of the Week as voted on Twitter  (44 votes)
Matt and Tom Graham 104 partnership off of 35 balls in T20 Little Bardfield V v. 7 Para RHA   75%
Sam Webb-Snowling 78 from 45 balls Copdock & OI v. Halstead  11%
Thata Tshose 5 for 33 Kelvedon v. Chappel & WC 2nd   9%
Malien Mudalige 91 Real Oddies v. Braintree  5%

Next Week
Next week’s action begins this evening at the Garrison Ground in the T20 West as 7 Para RHA welcome champions Coggeshall, who must win to have any chance of progressing to Finals Day this year. 7 Para will then go again on Sunday morning at 10am, as they welcome free scoring Braintree. The T20 East game at Ipswich has already been conceded by Great Bentley. In Division One leaders Wivenhoe are back in action, and on paper should be fairly comfortable winners against lowly Clacton. Second placed Elmstead face a sterner test at Castle Park, while Great Horkesley & Lexden welcome Mistley to Mile End. There is just one fixture in Division Two, as Bull Meadow plays host to a derby match between Great Totham and Witham. In Division Three, all eyes will be on The Brow, as third placed Abberton look to complete a double over leaders Springfield. Galleywood could go top if Abberton win, and they defeat fourth placed Kelvedon at Rye Mill Lane. While there should be a much needed win for one of the bottom two, as Harwich welcome Cavaliers. In Division Four, second placed Coggeshall can go top on net run rate if they win at Tendring, while Boxted entertain Great Braxted & Tiptree.