Cricketers wait 47 weeks to return to competitive action – and it rains!
- Credit: Archant
The break between cricket season’s, certainly in terms of Devon League action, is usually one of around 35 weeks between the last league game of one season and the first of the next.
However, with the 2019 Tolchards Devon League final matchday being played on August 31, 2019 and with Covid-19 playing a major part in delaying the start of the 2020 campaign, the gap between the final game of 2019 and the first of 2020 was one of 47 long weeks.
So, after such a long wait the one thing that local cricketers would have bene asking of the weather gods was to serve up a decent summers day!
Sadly, that was not to be the case with almost every one of the 65 odd matches being contested in the new ‘four team’ league competition that the Devon League has organised for clubs this season, were hit by rain.
Seaton travelled to Sidmouth for their opening game of the Premier East four-team competition campaign.
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Sadly, this was another game ruined by the rain, though there was a result, albeit on run rate with Seaton being sunk by a margin of 173 runs.
Seaton skipper ben Morgan won the toss and invited the home side to bat first. Morgan took the new ball himself, but just a couple of overs were possible before the rain arrived.
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Rain was to play a part throughout the afternoon! In terms of the cricket action, when play resumed Sidmouth went on to close on 226-9 after 26 overs with Morgan presenting the best of his sides bowling figures with 4-30 from five overs.
For the home side, the bulk of the runs came from Devon skipper Alex Barrow (60), Luke Bess (46), Josh Bess (31) and Nick Mansfield (24no). Daley Holmes and Wes Holmes both bagged a brace of wickets.
When Seaton batted they lost Richard Warner and Joel Seward with only five runs on the Fortfield score board and it was soon 25-5 with opener Josh Cann finally out after facing 45 deliveries. The only other Seaton batsman to face 30 or more balls was Daley Holmes (30). The Seaton effort ended after 25 overs with the score 54-8.
It was much more straightforward for Kilmington as they beat visiting Upottery by nine wickets.
Home skipper Brett Garner won the toss, invited Upottery to bat and then saw Olive Reed dismiss opener Jack Smith without a run on the Memorial Ground score board. Matt Broom the fell for three, but Matthew Button-Stephens (50) and Jack Larcombe (63) rebuilt the innings and Upottery closed on 182-8 after 35 overs. Kilmington used seven bowlers with the pick of the returns being 3-55 from Tom Olive.
The Kilmington run chase saw Matt Reed bowled by Ryan Pulman for two, but that’s as good as it got for the visitors as opener Josh Short (78) and Tom Olive (21) saw the home side over the winning line.
Feniton were 37-run winners of their East Three home game against Alphington & Countess Wear, another contest cut short by the rain with the sides playing a 20-over match.
Skipper-for-the-day Jon Pyle and Marc Russell were key contributors to the win.
After a couple of early wickets fell, John Buckland hit a run-a-ball 33 before Pyle, skippering in the absence of the working Mark Kingdon, then hit an unbeaten 42 as he and Russell (63no) saw Feniton to a close of 155-3 after their 20 overs.
When the visitors batted, Exeter City Football Club manager Matt Taylor top scored from the opening berth, his innings coming to an end thank to a Sam Vincent throw that saw the City boss run out for 45.
Mac Russell completed a fine all-round contribution with a brace of wickets and there were single wickets for Jack Tucker and Sam Vincent as Alphington & Countess Wear closed on 118-5 to leave Feniton to take the match honours.
Whimple went down by 13 runs in their East One Tier Two fixture at Thorverton.
Whimple skipper Gareth Stoneman won the toss and opted to field and his bowlers did their work well, bowling the Thors out for 147 in 39.1 overs. Third change Matt Richards did the bulk of the damage with figures of 4-12 from seven overs.
Rain then intervened to leave Whimple a revised target of 117 from 31 overs and they came up just short, bowled out for 103 in 30.4 overs.
Just three Whimple bats made it into double figures; Luke Phillips (28), Cameron Kidd (16) and Sam Jefferson (12).
Honiton came out on top in their East East Three meeting with Axminster with this fixture reduced to a 20-over affair. The Axe men were put in and battled their way to a close of 87-9 with Dan Murnane scoring almost half the runs with his knock of 40! Adam Holmes took the bowling honours with a return of five wickets for as many runs! Willy Graham bagged a brace of wickets for Honiton who then had Dave Haysom (32) and Kieran Conway (26no) to thank for what was ultimately a five-wicket success.
Uplyme & Lyme Regis defeated Ottery St Mary II in another East East Three meeting.
Batting first, Uplyme duo Tyler Wellman (100no) and Steve Batey (82 no) put on 177 for the unbroken third wicket as their side closed on 206-2 in 27 overs. The Otters were then set a revised target and closed on 85-3 after 20 overs to leave the home side empathic winners, albeit on run rate.