Commitment call to Bradenham

Bradenham (5pts) drew with Old Buckenham (15) in Alliance Division One

BRADENHAM limped along to hold out for a disappointing draw against their high-flying opponents, prompting a call from captain Rob Thurley for his players to show more commitment if they want to make any impression in the division.

He said after the match: 'It was embarrassing really, our opponents had been warming up for at least 30 minutes before the last of our players arrived at the ground, allowing little time for our own pre-match preparations.

'There is reluctance to train and practice during the week, and we saw the results again today with at least four crucial catches dropped in the first 10 overs as we let Old Buckenham off the hook on a wicket giving every assistance to our bowlers. We should have been chasing a total of no more than 120 or so, instead we failed to even bowl them out.'

Thurley had won the toss and elected to field first on a very dry wicket, unaffected by heavy overnight rain as the covers did their job.

The first catch had already been spilled before wicket-keeper Steve Matthews did hold on to an excellent catch to dismiss John Fudgeoff Brett Stolworthy with only six on the board. Stolworthy was the unlucky bowler as further catches went down as his opening seven overs cost only eight runs, but crucially for only one wicket.

Alex Bates finally accounted for Tom Banham, with the captain holding on to a sharp catch.

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Shawn Goodby and Chad Balluza kept the breaks on the scoring rate as the wicket continued to play tricks. James Heaney survived at least two chances before falling to Goodby for 33 and shortly afterwards Terry Perry chipped a catch back to Balluza to leave the visitors 95–4 after 30 overs.

Goodby pulled up injured 11.2 overs into his spell taking 1-35 in an impressive performance. Pat Dewing finished the over and immediately bowled Lawrence for 14.

Balluza bowled well (1-42 from 13 overs) before another wicket to the returning Stolworthy left Old Buckenham 135–6 with only seven overs remaining. Andy Austin and Phil King plundered 49 further runs as the innings closed on 184-6.

Bradenham, after seven balls, were 0-2 with openers Kevin Stagles and Steve Matthews both back in the pavillion. Youngsters Lewis Denmark and Brett Stolworthy had taken the total to 19 before Stolworthy played an uncharacteristic shot and was out for nine.

Rob Thurley followed two balls later and any hope of victory disappeared as Pat Dewing went for six to leave the innings in disarray at 38–5 with still 32 overs left to bat.

Kevin Blakey and Denmark slowly got the scoreboard moving, adding 71 for the sixth wicket before Blakey missed a full toss and was bowled for 36 having batted with a good blend of attack and defence.

Andy Wilton quickly followed for a duck but Denmark and Balluza stood firm as they held out for a draw, 134 securing a crucial additional batting point.

Denmark demonstrated his increasing maturity as he batted for 49 overs finishing a hard earned 67 not out as he saved his team from defeat.

For the visitors Andy Lawrence was the pick of the bowlers with an impressive return of 5–25.

Saturday sees a visit to league leaders Acle and with a tough match in prospect Thurley has called for his players to arrive at the ground by 11.45am to undertake a thorough pre-match warm-up routine and to adopt a much more professional approach.

Bradenham are sponsored by Trek Highway Services, the match ball sponsored by WC Littleproud & Son.

Old Buckenham: T Banham c Thurley b Bates 19, J Fudge c Matthews b Stolworthy 3, T Perry c-b Balluza 24, J Heaney c Dewing b Goodby 33, J Alexander c Thurley b Stolworthy 15, A Lawrence b Dewing 14, A Austin not out 25, P King not out 28; extras 23. Total 184-6. Bowling: B Stolworthy 13-3-39-2, A Bates 9-0-45-1, S Goodby 11.2-3-35-1, R Thurley 3-0-15-0, C Balluza 13-2-42-1, P Dewing 0.4-0-1-1.

Bradenham: K Stagles b Lawrence 0, S Matthews b Goldsmith 0, L Denmark not out 67, B Stolworthy c Banham b Lawrence 9, R Thurley c Banham b Lawrence 0, P Dewing b R Austin 6, K Blakey b Lawrence 36, A Wilton c Lawrence 0, C Balluza not out 4; extras 10. Total 132-7. Bowling: A Lawrence 13-4-25-5, P Goldsmith 13-3-39-1, R Austin 11-4-10-1, P King 7-2-29-0, T Alexander 6-0-28-0.

Bradenham A (17pts) secured a winning draw at Norwich B (8)

This was the best display by Bradenham A yet this season. Again, the team contain five young players — including Reubin Leroy for his first Alliance outing — and hopefully this upturn in form will continue. The team are at home on Saturday to Hethersett and Tas Valley.

Bradenham batted first on another good wicket but quickly lost opener Hills with the score still on nought.

Skipper Ian Moody joined Ian Gibb and has happy to try and consolidate the innings whilst Gibb began to play some customary forceful shots. Gibb struck four big sixes as well as a number of classy fours. A change of bowling was his undoing when he eventually played round a straight one and was bowled by Uthaprajarm for an entertaining 51 runs.

Marcus Evans and Moody pushed the score along nicely with Evans' driving and pull shots a feature. Moody was out first to a ball which unusually climbed to be caught at slip for a patient 24.

Brett Gates looked comfortable hitting two classy boundaries. The pair looked set to complete big scores before Evans was out for 23, stumped.

Lewis Bates had settled before he called Gates for a run which Usain Bolt would have struggled to complete. It left the hapless Gates well short and he was run out for 17. Bates began to redeem himself, and despite Tom Christian being out for one, Zac Watts was playing a responsible innings at the other end.

They had put together a fine partnership of 81 runs when Watts was bowled for a very good 39 in the last over. The innings closed on a creditable 232-7 with Bates finishing on an excellent 56 not out.

Bradenham's opening bowler Adcock bowled both Ingham's opening batsmen with the score still in single figures

Norwich B finished on 175-7. Pick of the Bradenham bowlers were Adcock, 3-25 off 10 overs; Evans, 2-29 off 10 and Moody, 1-5 off eight.

Bradenham entertained Dereham in the Sunday League and elected to bat.

Wickets fell at regular intervals. Rob Thurley scored 30, Chad Balluza 23. Highlight was former Dereham youngsterJason Ward (14) who hit six boundaries in an unbeaten 31.

Bradenham were all out for 132, however rain forced abandonment.

Next game at Mundford, meet 1.30pm.