Downham Market lose home opener with over to spare

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Dipple & Conway Norfolk Alliance Premier Division

Downham 258-6 (9pts) lost to Sprowston 262-8 (23pts) by 2 wkts

After a disappointing opening day defeat to newly promoted Garboldisham, Downham faced Sprowston at the Memorial on Saturday hoping to get back on the winning track.

Having won the toss, Downham batted first, and after losing Todd early on Harrison and Yates started about setting a very competitive total. The mainstay of the innings was a well-made 75 from new captain Pat Yates.

Yates was complimented well by the hard hitting New Zealander, Nick Kelly, who made 44 before being bowled by Evans.

Once those two went it was left to Duncan Lanchester (49) and Joss Stuart (30*) to finish the innings with some brilliant batting and set a very competitive total of 259 to win.

With new rules coming in this season meaning a draw is no longer possible, Downham knew Sprowston would come at them from the start. This worked in Downham’s favour as they claimed the first three wickets for just 40 runs with Ian Harrison taking 2 for 13.

A fourth wicket partnership of 106 between the Sprowston captain Hales (95) and the overseas pro Egan (42) meant the game was very much in the balance at the halfway point of the second innings.

Once Kelly had Egan caught going for a maximum the game swung back in favour of Downham and looked for a long time it would go the way of the home side especially when Hales was bowled by Chris Sharp (2 for 53).

With 10 overs left, Sprowston required 80 with just four wickets remaining, but it was not to be for the home side as a very well made 52 not out by youngster Evans won Sprowston the game with an over to spare.

Downham host Brooke tomorrow still striving for their first league win of the season followed by a tough trip to fellow Premier Division opposition Diss in the Carter Cup on Sunday.

CGM Group MoM – Pat Yates.

Stow (23 points) beat

Dereham by 5 wkts

Stow maintained an unbeaten start to the season with a second dominant run chase of the season.

Dereham captain Hewitt won the toss and elected to bat. Stow’s opening bowlers Ward (0-22) and Richmond again bowled with accuracy and control keeping the run rate to a minimum. Richmond removed Cameron for 0 thanks to a sublime diving catch from keeper Cook.

On a pitch offering very little for the bowlers Hewitt and Dan Lake began to frustrate the home side who became guilty of bowling straight to leg side dominant players. Stow failed to capitalise on a couple of missed chances but then Barter bowled three players: Lake for 37, Dave Lake 12 and Bidwell 10. Barter had Marczeski caught by Landymore for 0, finishing with 4-44.

Attempting a caught and bowled chance, Barter dropped the catch but in the process deflected the ball onto the stumps, running out Hewitt for a very well made 74.

Harbour produced some lusty blows until he was removed by Richmond (2-36). A Steven Moulton run out got Stow their fourth bowling point as Dereham finished on 215-8 – a total that seemed below par on a good wicket with a fast outfield.

Bowman and High began Stow’s reply with positive strokes amid wayward bowling. Bowman was removed lbw for 4, bringing in-form Denny to the crease. Denny and High unleashed their full range of shots to race the score onto 91. High fell caught and bowled to Hewitt for 21.

Denny, now joined by captain Landymore, continued to strike the ball cleanly and hit a couple of monstrous sixes. A hundred looked on until a drive from Denny was mistimed into the gully, departing for a match-winning 84.

Dereham rallied a little, removing White for 8 and Davey for 1, leaving Stow 169-5. However Landymore (41 not out) again played the anchor role being supported by Barter who finished unbeaten on 27. Two wins from two as Stow prepare for a trip to Lowestoft next weekend.