Hockwold triumph as title race goes down to the wire

The Hockwold team celebrating their winning of the WNCL Division One title.
The Hockwold team celebrating their winning of the WNCL Division One title.
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Division One

In a thrilling climax to the WNCL Division One title race Snettisham hosted leaders Hockwold with a 12 point deficit to make up.

Snettisham won the toss and fielded first. Captain Roy Bland top scored with 49, with good support from Anthony Ruddick with 35.

Kieran Herbert took 5 for 34 and Damien Twiddy 3 for 14.

Hockwold’s last pair Steve Barrett and Bert Marlow held out for seven overs to deny Snettisham the last bowling point, which proved vital, as Hockwold’s innings closed on 146 for 9.

As Hockwold held the advantage with a better net run rate over the season, Snettisham needed to win without losing more than two wickets.

Jonathan Forder went for a duck early to make the task harder but a 48-run partnership between Lewis Jeavons 39 and Ryan Twiddy 27 gave Snettisham hope.

Roy Bland took the important fourth wicket to secure a second bowling point and with it the title of champions.

Tony Park 26 not out and Kieran Herbert 25no saw Snettisham home to victory in the 42nd over for a six-wicket win, which meant both teams then finished on 231 points.

Over a long season, it all came down to Hockwold’s final NRR (net run rate) of 1.82 being better than Snettisham’s 1.41 to see them crowned champions of the West Norfolk Cricket League.

Following the merger with the Norfolk Cricket League scheduled for the start of next season, we will look forward to competing in a new, regionally based NCL of 10 divisions.

Elsewhere in the division, Adam Burch scored 40 in Sandringham’s total of 173 for 8. Ben Melton took 4 for 37 to restrict Castle Rising to 127 for 6 for whom Perry Dawson scored 29.

That 46-run victory saw Sandringham finish in third place.

Jim Parker was unbeaten on 52 as Heacham reached 174 for 7 in their 45 overs. Matt Taylor took 3 for 23 for Hillington.

Richard Eke scored 56 in Hillington’s 111 all out with Tom Williams taking 3 for 14, Matthew Wright 3 for 22 and Anthony Sadler 3 for 23 to see Heacham finish the season with a flourish with back-to-back wins.

Heacham finished bottom, seven points behind Hillington. Dan Cornwell took 5 for 12 as Northwold were bowled out for 64.

James Harper was unbeaten on 36 as Denver won by eight wickets in the 13th over.

That win took them three points above Castle Rising to see them finish in fourth place.

Division Two

Gooderstone missed the chance to secure the Division Two title and now must wait to see if Castle Acre can score eight points or more in their rescheduled match against Hospital next week.

Sam Molyneux top scored with 28 as Castle Acre reached 125 all out.

Tom Brown took 4 for 21 and Jack Pinner 3 for 19 as Gooderstone were bowled all out for 83 to suffer only their second defeat of the season.

No other cricket was played in Division Two as Hospital conceded to Downham B, Fakenham 3rds conceded to Sandringham A and Narborough A conceded to Holt.

Division Three

Paul Ingram had impressive bowling figures of 10-7-10-5 as Bircham A were bowled out for 89 with Robin Tuck scoring 31.

Michael Herbert was unbeaten on 31 as Snettisham A reached 93 for 5 in the 27th over to win by five wickets and finish third behind Bircham A by four points.

At the start of play Dersingham A were only a point behind Bircham A and they duly did all they could with a maximum points win against Gooderstone A which was enough for them to be crowned Division Three champions.

Jack Cotton took 4 for 12 and Benji Linsell 3 for 11 as Gooderstone A were bowled out for 46. Openers Jamie White and Shaun Felgate both were unbeaten on 21 to secure a 10-wicket victory.

Martin Coker took 3 for 14 and T Wallace 3 for 11 as Gayton bowled out Castle Rising A for 87.

Andrew Tilbrook was unbeaten on 41 as Gayton won by eight wickets in the 14th over to finish in fourth place.

Ryan Bradbury took 4 for 29 as Denver A were bowled out for 116 with Dave Robinson top scoring with 31.

Tony Exley was unbeaten on 39 but couldn’t prevent Swaffham A being bowled out for 66 with Richard Simpson taking 5 for 39 and Tom Gilbert 3 for 26 as Denver won by 50 runs.