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3rd XI - Match centre

Much Wenlock CC - 1st XI
Wellington CC, Shropshire - 3rd XI
Sat 5 Sep 13:00 - Shropshire County Cricket League - Division Two

The Dog Days Of Summer

Wellington 3rds moved to within one win of promotion after a hard-fought victory at Much Wenlock.

Defending 153, Division Two’s bottom side put up a brave fight, reducing Steve Pitchford’s men to 65 for 5 at one stage before Dicko (24) and Gaughany (40*) resuscitated the innings and put their side on the course for victory.

After last week’s victory over Ellesmere and the subsequent abandonment of their fixture this week, the 3rds sit 30 points clear of their nearest promotion rivals with two games to play.

***

Despite entering one of the crunch fixtures of the season, Wellington minds were badly distracted in the run-up to the game after a disturbing revelation about the interesting private lives of the skipper’s dog and cat.

Worryingly, they do say that dogs take after their owners, so God knows what species Pitchy will try to mount if his team get promoted next week. Mr Holt better fetch the sheep in.

The Wenlock pitch looked to be on the wet side, so there was no surprise when the skipper chose to bowl first.

With no Sam Topper to lead the line, a curve ball was thrown, with leggie Lewis Gough being given the new pill. He had a wicket in his second over as the plan came off. Wellington had begun positively.

Soon there was another victim for the diminutive spinner, as the other opener's drive was sliced to the grateful Harry Gaughan at cover. It could have been more had Fishy reacted to a chance at short fine-leg, but he opted to leave it instead. *Awaits bite*

Thereafter Wellington toiled, with Wenlock pair Cooke (63) and Howley (58) recovering their side’s poor start and causing the visiting captain some concern, albeit without ever really threatening to take the game away.

Eventually Howley was removed to a smart catch by Dicko off Simmo’s bowling and Wellington began to accelerate through the home side’s line-up. Rabbit hunter Dave Ross took another jug-avoiding four-fer, whilst Lewis returned to remove Cooke, who was by this stage running out of partners.

When Dicko claimed the ninth-wicket the innings was unexpectedly brought to a halt. Apparently Wenlock’s eleventh man needed to attend to urgent marital issues, so was unable to take to the crease. The hosts had to stick on their total of 153 and surrendered two overs of the first dig.

Richard Benting gave Wellington a similar start to that conjured up against Ellesmere, bludgeoning a quick 48 at the top of the innings, including a huge six that had the nearby lawn bowlers running for cover.

However Tug's innings lacked support and when he was eventually dismissed he had already lost partners Shoehorn (4) and Pat (0). Simmo (3) and Smurph (0) followed quickly and Wellington were suddenly in trouble at 65 for 5.

There then followed a tense period of play with Dicko and Gaughany playing themselves in and finding scoring difficult. However they were successful in negotiating the best of the home side’s bowling, arresting the Wellington collapse.

Both men grew into the game, forcing Wenlock onto the back foot with excellent running between the wicket. As they took the score past 100 they began to find the boundaries regularly - and Wenlock heads dropped accordingly.

It was therefore a bit of surprise when Dicko top-edged a sweep for 24 with his side still requiring 30 to win. Luckily the skipper was hiding himself down at eight again, so the finish was not as close as it might have been, especially as Gaughany was now batting with fluency.

Not even an on-field incursion by a local spaniel could distract the Wellington batters from the job at hand. The canine invader had clearly heard about Pitchy’s laissez-faire moggy and wanted in on the action - but the skipper was in no mood to be handing out phone numbers with a crucial game to be won.

The 3rds got home with nearly five overs to spare and face Willey next week. Victory will guarantee promotion to Division One.

Scorecard

Wellington CC, Shropshire - 3rd XI won the toss and decided to bowl.

Much Wenlock CC - 1st XI batting

R
B
4s
6s
SR
Sam George
ct. H Gaughan, b. L Gough
1
 
Jamie Allden
b. L Gough
8
 
James Cooke
ct. S Pitchford, b. L Gough
63
 
Harry Howley
ct. M Dickenson, b. M Simmonds
58
 
Wilf Grainger
b. D Ross
4
 
Ed Myers
ct. H Gaughan, b. D Ross
4
 
Dave Arnold
lb. D Ross
2
 
Oscar Fitzgerald-Lowe
b. D Ross
0
 
Richard Bill
Not Out
4
 
Tony Burton
b. M Dickenson
1
 
Steve Charlton
Timed Out
0
 
Extras
4w, 3b, 1lb
8
Total
for 10 wickets 43 overs
153

Wellington CC, Shropshire - 3rd XI bowling

O
M
R
W
Econ
Extras
Jack Fishman
6
1
12
0
2.0
Lewis Gough
9
2
33
3
3.7
David Ross
15
1
55
4
3.7
Harry Gaughan
5
1
11
0
2.2
Matty Simmonds
5
0
20
1
4.0
Matthew Dickenson
3
0
18
1
6.0

Wellington CC, Shropshire - 3rd XI batting

R
B
4s
6s
SR
Richard Benting
ct. H Howley, b. T Burton
48
6
2
 
Dan Pilkington
b. R Bill
4
1
 
Patrick Howells
lb. T Burton
0
 
Matty Simmonds
ct. J Cooke, b. J Cooke
3
 
Matthew Dickenson
ct. R Bill, b. S Charlton
24
1
 
Ian Murphy
b. R Bill
0
 
Harry Gaughan
Not Out
40
4
 
Steve Pitchford
Not Out
10
1
 
Jack Fishman
 
 
Lewis Gough
 
 
David Ross
 
 
Extras
11w, 1b, 2lb, 11nb
25
Total
for 6 wickets 42.2 overs
154

Much Wenlock CC - 1st XI bowling

O
M
R
W
Econ
Extras
Richard Bill
15
4
44
2
2.9
Tony Burton
7
0
37
2
5.3
James Cooke
9
2
21
1
2.3
Steve Charlton
6.2
0
20
1
3.3
Sam George
5
0
29
0
5.8

Team selection

League round up

Other Division Two results

Ellesmere CC - 1st XI
C
C
Prees CC - 1st XI
Bishops Castle CC - 1st XI
99/9
130/8
Cae Glas CC - 1st XI
Willey CC - 1st XI
69
146/9
Condover CC - 1st XI
Montgomery CC - 1st XI
83/3
77/9
Church Stretton CC - 1st XI
94
95/3
Welshpool CC - 1st XI

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League table

# Team Pts
1. Condover CC - 1st XI 397
2. Wellington CC, Shropshire - 3rd XI 331
3. Willey CC - 1st XI 296
4. Welshpool CC - 1st XI 291
5. Ellesmere CC - 1st XI 287
6. Montgomery CC - 1st XI 271
7. Cae Glas CC - 1st XI 241

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