Fakenham CC opening batsmen Chad Bowes and Luke Findlay amazingly set two club records in the same Dipple & Conway Norfolk Alliance Premier match on Saturday.
Fakenham won the toss and elected to bat with overseas player Bowes and Findlay soon making their intentions clear, picking off the Swardeston 2nd bowlers with comparative ease and at 25 overs had scored 140 runs.
They continued to dominate the bowling with South African Bowes reaching his second consecutive century in the 31st over, being well supported by Findlay.
They kept up the onslaught and went on to set a new opening partnership record for the club of 294 in 43 overs, when Findlay was out for a delightful 102. Bowes was out soon after but not before setting another club record for the highest individual score of 211 off 142 balls with 29 fours and four sixes – beating the record held by former West Indian Test cricketer Stuart Williams of 204.
The duo’s batting was well appreciated by all the Fakenham team and supporters.
Fakenham’s total of 337 for 3 was always going to be difficult to chase down for Swardeston and losing an early wicket to Lloyd Marshall didn’t help, but Will Kidner and Daniel Poulton took the score to 76 before Poulton was caught by Will Dunger for 44.
More wickets fell to Toby Hood who was the pick of the Fakenham bowlers with 3 for 33 in his 10 overs. A good partnership between Ben Hogg (66 not out) and Ian Tufts (45) gave the Swardeston score respectability of 246 for 6 but falling short of the target by 95 runs.
This was the fourth consecutive win for Fakenham and a win next weekend in the final game at Sprowston could take them into second place – a good recovery after a poor start.
Cookes of Fakenham man of the match: Luke Findlay.
Downham hosted Diss on Saturday knowing a win would confirm their Premier Division status for 2017 and send their opposition down.
The day started well as Yates won the toss and asked Diss to bat, however after two early wickets, one apiece for Joss Stuart and Addam Todd, Downham took their foot off the gas. David Tooke and Chris Cooper took the attack to the bowlers who struggled to cope. The two put on 137 for the third wicket with Cooper making a brilliant 120, his first century in the division.
When Tooke went for 64 to the bowling of Ian Harrison, it started a collapse which couldn’t be stopped. Sam Sharp took 4 for 36 with all his wickets coming in a dazzling second spell whilst Addam Todd came back to clean up the tail as Diss were all out for 244.
In reply Downham were in a hurry, with Todd and Tansley taking the attack to the weaker than usual Diss bowling. Todd made a hard hitting 90 which saw him hit four sixes and although it was disappointing not to see him reach his hundred it was again a great innings from the Downham man.
When Todd was dismissed Joss Stuart joined Pat Yates at the crease and for the second week in a row the two put on over 100. Yates finished up on 60 not out, making sure he was there at the end to see his side through. Stuart hit the winning runs to finish on 59 not out and is starting to show just what a valuable all-rounder he can be when given the chance up the order.
Downham 2nd team take on Winterton at the Memorial Ground tomorrow knowing that a win will secure the Division Three title.
CGM Group MoM – Sam Sharp.