Cricket season under way

Great Witchingham's opening duo James Spelman and Carl Rogers enjoyed a 152-run partnership, laying the foundation for an impressive 304 for 2 total in the derby against Norwich at Ingham.

Great Witchingham's opening duo James Spelman and Carl Rogers enjoyed a 152-run partnership, laying the foundation for an impressive 304 for 2 total in the derby against Norwich at Ingham.

Skipper Spelman made 86, while Rogers went on to complete an unbeaten 127. Sam Arthurton was run out for 50 as Norwich laboured.

Norwich had to hang on grimly to earn a draw, closing on 223 for 9 as batting heroes Spelman and Rogers took the upper hand with the ball to claim six wickets with their deadly spin.

BRADENHAM opened their programme in Division One of the Norfolk Alliance with a difficult trip to Swardeston.

Bradenham were invited to bat on a typical early-season wicket and opener Lewis Denmark was caught behind for two. Bradenham's new overseas player, 'Popes' Selowa arrived in this country two days earlier but the young South African soon adjusted. The batting at the opposite end failed to match his own standards with Matthews lbw for two and Marcus Evans for nought, having shouldered arms to a delivery which cut back to hit off stump.

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Selowa continued to score at a very good rate with shots all around the ground, his text-book cover drives and hooks catching the eye for 64 off only 70 deliveries. Mark Hunter went for 20 after promising to make a good score. Swardeston switched to a spin and the only other real contributions came from Blakey with 18 and Gates with 12no in a total of 133.

In the field, the opening attack of Brett Stolworthy and Brett Gates soon had the Swardeston batsmen in trouble, regularly playing and missing at great deliveries or finding the edge. Stolworthy was showing real pace and was very unlucky. Both were rewarded with wickets. With Selowa also contributing with the ball and picking up two wickets himself, Bradenham were still in the game. Opener Cadge and Bilham 46 and 48no respecively, helped Swardeston pass the total required off 26 overs with five wickets down - Selowa 2 for 32, Stolworthy 2 for 27.

Popes Selowa demonstrated his undoubted class and with other batsmen looking to improve and more luck for the bowlers, Kevin Blakey and his team are looking forward to their first home fixture on The Green against Bradfield.

Bradenham CC's main sponsor is Blue-Print Mortgages. Bradenham's match ball is sponsored by Trek Highway Services.

Bradenham player Lewis Denmark hit a magnificent 170 runs in their Mid Norfolk Sunday Division One victory at Narborough.

Bradenham batted first and the 16-year-old opener played wonderfully well, dispatching the Narborough bowlers to all corners of the field with fours and sixes.

A few wickets tumbled but other batsmen chipped in, most notably Stolworthy who stroked a good 37. The afternoon belonged to Denmark however, who was finally out to a fine diving catch on the long-off boundary attempting yet another big forcing shot.

This was a notable achievement for this young Norfolk player, who equalled the club record batting score and beat the previous club Sunday League record score by 36 runs. The Bradenham innings finished on 267 for 6.

A variety of bowling was employed by the Bradenham skipper with youngsters Ryan Adcock and Matthew Clarke (3 for 55) bowling good spells. They were well supported by the Stolworthy brothers and the flight and guile of the twin-spin attack that was Andy Cole and Marcus Evans. Coe scored a very good 73 for Narborough and Hill capped a fine all-round game for by finishing on 56 not out. Their innings closed on a creditable 204 for 6 off their 40 overs. Another feature of the match was a masterclass performance behind the stumps by Popes Selowa, the young South African demonstrating the full range of wicketkeeping skills including a brilliant leg-side stumping.

Dereham 2nds lost to Rocklands by eight wickets in the Norfolk Alliance Division Five.

A very young Dereham second team - including seven under-18s - gave a spirited display. Dereham elected to bat and lost four early wickets to good line and length. Captain Sam Widdows gave some stability to the side and young Jamie Irons played some good shots in his 24.

The middle order of Ian Clarke, Josh Barber - who was making his Alliance debut - and top scorer Stewart Thompson helped take Dereham over the 100 mark and prevented Rocklands bowling Dereham all out. Thompson hit an array of good strokes in his unbeaten 29.

Liam O'Callaghan - playing his first game in men's cricket - made an important five not out at the end.

Dereham's young team showed great commitment, enthusiasm and application in the field as Rocklands were made to work for the runs. Jamie Irons and James Harbour got the two wickets to fall.

Ryan Widdows, O'Callaghan and Thompson also deserve credit for tight spells.

DEREHAM beat Mundford by four wickets in the Mid Norfolk Sunday League

Bowling first on a very dry track George Pledger and Jake Anema got Dereham off to a very good start with an early wicket from Anema. Mundford reached 123 for 2 before wickets fell thanks to a very good spell from Jamie Irons. 3 for 20 off four overs. Mundford slumped to 172 for 6, Jake Anema finishing off with 1 for 37

and Max Cheetham bowling very well for his 2 for 45.

Dereham's openers got off to a decent start but when Lake was bowled for 13 and Jack Perrin West went for 11 the game seemed to be slipping out of Dereham's reach. Jon Crisp and Jake Anema needed over 100 runs off 16 overs and put on a very good partnership which brought Dereham closer to victory. But when Crisp went for a well-played 22 it was left to Jake Anema to steer Dereham to a much-needed win for the club with a superb 55no. Robert Mabee made 37 and Max Cheetham a solid eight not out.

Dereham reached 175 for 6 comfortably with three overs to spare.

Mundford: Webster b Irons 51, White c Crisp b Anema 4, Norman b Cheetham 33, Bassett b Irons 65, Allsopp c-b Irons 3, Welch not out 2. Total 172 for 6.

Bowling: Anema 10-0-34-1, Pledger 10-0-41-0, Cheetham 10-0-45-2, Harbour 5-0-20-0, Simpson 1-0-13-0, Irons 3-0-20-3.

Dereham: Lake b Norman 13, Mabee b Smith 37, J P West lbw Norman 11, S Widdows b Welch 7, J Crisp b Norman 23, J Irons b Welch 0, J Anema not out 55, M Cheetham not out 8. Total 175 for 6.

Bowling: Norman 10-0-26-3, Palmer 7-0-25-0, Smith 6-0-11-1, Burt 6-0-18-0, Welch 3-0-15-2, A Flintoff 3-0-18-0, P Norman 4-0-27-0.

North Elmham travelled to Hardingham in Norfolk League Division Six and lost by 73 runs.

Elmham skipper Chris Palmer had no hesitation in inviting the hosts to bat. Iain Sinclair and Ant Keeble opened the attack and Sinclair struck twice to leave Hardingham 3 for 2. Chris Hearne and Jamie Fowle attempted to repair the damage. Fowle batted very sensibly while Hearne was severe on the loose delivery. Elmham failed to take the chances offered by Hearne as the score mounted and Hearne reached his half century quickly as the pair added 132 in 24 overs before Andy Kay had Hearnes caught by Blackford for 73 from 69 balls faced. Chris Palmer was forced out off the attack with a knee injury as the Elmham attack wilted. Sparkes and Fowle took the score to 190 before Keeble took a fine tumbling catch to dismiss Fowle for a watchful 80 from 109 balls faced. Elmham then took the last six Hardingham wickets quickly as the innings closed on 226. Iain Sinclair was the best Elmham bowler with 5-42 from his 12 overs.

Iain Sinclair was asked to open the Elmham innings with Stephan Malherbe. Sinclair soon fell to Hastings and Futter joined Malherbe and the pair scored freely against the medium pacers. Hardingham then introduced two slow bowlers in Harris and Fowle and Malherbe was out for 42 from 72 balls faced. With 20 overs to go Elmham needed 131 to win but the batsmen struggled with the lack of pace and wickets fell at regular intervals as only 28 runs came off the next 10 overs. Futter scored 69 from 69 balls before being run out. The Elmham innings finished with the visitors unable to gain their fourth batting point and were 153 for 8 to lose by 73 runs.

For Hardingham, Fowle took 3-37 and Harris 3- 26 as the pair only conceded 63 runs from their combined 23 overs.

Chris Palmer was left to ponder on the chances that went begging and the fact that Elmham did not have a slow bowler in their side. Next week at home to Loddon A.

SWANTON Morley 2nd X1 elected to field on a damp but drying wicket at Gayton. The Gayton openers Adam Chadderton (45) and Tony Mallett (29) got the innings off to a good start before Chadderton was run out. Barry Green was introduced to slow things down and reduced the home side to 138 for 9 taking six for 25 in 10.1 overs. However a late cameo by Andy Thompson (53 not out) moved the Gayton score to 188 all out.

The Swanton reply never got started and they were bowled out for 38 by Thompson (3 wickets for 10 runs) and Martin Haylock who bowled 11.3 overs and took seven for 22.