Fakenham produce their worst display of the season in defeat against Downham

Fakenham CC's Tom Yarham showing a degree of aggression.

Fakenham CC's Tom Yarham showing a degree of aggression. - Credit: Archant

Welcome to the wonderful Jeckyl and Hyde world that is Fakenham cricket this year.

Fresh from last week's excellent win Fakenham travelled to Downham with only one change from last week's team, Steve Earle back for Harry Blackistone, for a match that would always be tough.

Fakenham won the toss and elected to field first. Lloyd Marshall opened the bowling at one end with Tom White at the other and whilst Marshall was relatively economical (bar wides), White was taken off after only two overs having 17 runs taken off him. Steve Earl replaced White and things started to steady with a wicket coming in only his second over when he bowled the opener, Harrison, 24-1.

The fielding was not the outstanding performance of the previous week and runs slowly leaked until the second wicket fell when Earl bowled the other opener Gregory, 43-2.

This brought in Gould to join Yates and together they plundered 87 runs for the next wicket. Bowling changes did not help, the main problems was a lack of consistency in both line and length from the Fakenham bowlers to take what advantage was available from the pitch and conditions. Yates eventually made a good 93 before becoming Earl's third victim, caught by Dave Coyle.

Gould had made 40 before he gave another catch to Coyle off Pete Matthews' bowling. Two more wickets to Matthews was all that could be salvaged with Downham easily reaching 279-6 off their 50 overs with 100 coming off the last 10.

It has to be said it was a poor fielding performance, the actual fielding lacked the sharpness of the previous week and the bowling figures were certainly not going to help with any averages.

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After tea Fakenham started their innings and it was soon apparent that it was not going to be a good day. Downham's bowlers were accurate with line and length and their fielding was excellent as was soon apparent when openers Monahan-Fairlie and Bammant gave catches to leave Fakenham on 19-2.

One run later Dunger was dismissed for 0 with yet another catch, 20-3. The writing was on the wall.

Yarham scored 16 before he too decided Downham needed more catching practice. Dave Coyle offered some resistance with his 19 but 62-6 was not looking terribly good and it was hard to see the 100 being reached, however with some bowling changes and a slight tail wag Fakenham managed 110 all out, a score that probably flattered them.

As an all-round performance it has to rank as probably the worst this season by far and improvement is really necessary if they are to remain in the Premier Division. There will be some new and some returning faces next week, so let's hope they bring an improvement. There was definitely no Cooke's of Fakenham Man of the Match awarded for this game.

This Saturday is a home fixture against Horsford A (start 1pm).