Axminster let a real chance slip

PUBLISHED: 09:52 10 August 2011

Cricket stumps

Cricket stumps

Archant

AXMINSTER skipper Paul Miller was left to lament his side’s failure to hold catches as the Cloakham Lawns side’s B Division relegation worries increased after a seven wicket home defeat at the hands of Tavistock.

The in-form Gary Larcombe (60), Daniel Murnane (41), the skipper (45) and a helpful 38 extras took Axminster to a close of 240-5.

The Tavistock reply ought to have been in trouble but both openers were put down in the early exchanges of the reply and both went on to punish the soft hands by making big scores that ultimately led to Axminster’s defeat.

Miller said: “Catches do win matches and we put down no fewer than five including both openers and you can’t win games when you do that! The defeat is a tough one to swallow, for, at tea, I really felt our 240 was a healthy total, and one we were very capable of certainly not losing the match with.”

With four games to play Axminster are most certainly involved in a relegation battle. Their last four games offer little hope of them escaping the drop and, if they do survive they’ll have done it the hard way.

They begin the run-in with a visit from Barnstaple and Pilton on Saturday. They then go to Chagford before ending with a trip to Chudleigh followed by a last day home game with South Devon. Those last two games are against the sides currently second and third in the table!

Miller says: “It’s going to be tough, and we realistically need to win two of those four and pick up decent points in the other two games. Clearly the critical one is the Chagford trip in two weeks but we simply have to bank points this Saturday against Barum.”

Chagford, who sit second bottom, immediately below Axminster, have a much easier run in with their last four games seeing them take on each of the sides currently sitting in the bottom five! Also not out of the woods are both Thorverton and Dartington and Miller says: “It may well be a case of Chagford doing us a favour or two in their remaining games. That would mean we may escape with them and consign Thorverton or Dartington to the drop.”

Bottom side Clyst St George have added to the Axminster woes as they recorded a second win of the season on Saturday and are now just twenty points from safety themselves!


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