Swanton Morley lose out to leaders Reepham & Salle

SWANTON Morley succumbed to leaders Reepham & Salle in Norfolk League Division Six on Saturday.

Swanton lost the toss and were invited to take to the field, opening bowlers N Richer and W McKinney began well and when Richer struck the wickets in the fifth over, it was clear his lucky jumper was staying on during an inspired spell.

Reepham's R Briggs and P Minns offered Swanton plenty of wicket taking opportunities, but again Swanton's poor fielding cost them dearly, with Hudson's four over throws from 10 yards being a particular highlight.

Gauntlet's bowling offered Swanton an opportunity when he struck with a ball turning sharply to bowl Briggs for 36.

This brought Reepham's Joe Hollis to the crease who quickly picked up the pace, taking advantage of some luck and began to milk Nathan Raines with some very good running between the wickets. He eventually fell to a stunning catch from Richer, followed quickly with Gauntlett picking up two quick wickets including P Minns (70).

Swanton's hopes of a revival were quickly dashed when Reepham's A Meek dispatched McKinney for 18 runs from one over, despite a heroic dive from C Palmer, who only succeeded in flicking the ball into the sightscreen, leaving Reepham with a challenging total of 225 for five.

Opening batsmen Gauntlett and Palmer started well against some very tight bowling. Palmer in particular found the boundary with ease and was unfortunate to retire hurt when he pulled a muscle turning sharply.

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This brought Joe Hudson to the crease who after some fiery shots over the slips, was again bowled while failing to keep his eye on the ball. Gary Whiteside was once again called upon to dig Swanton out of a hole and at the same time look to increase his healthy average.

The game turned when Gauntlett was bowled by a good yorker from Tipple, with the outcome begining to look ominous for Swanton.

New batsmen Ben Hudson rallied, but Whiteside fell to a slower ball from G Wright, bringing McKinney to the crease. He did not waste anyone's time in getting bowled first ball.

A mini collapse ensued, with Tipple picking up a hat-trick, Hudson bowled trying to smash a full toss, J Frost playing down the wrong line and C Westbury playing the ball on to his stumps.

The game was lost, but valuable points were still on offer and a fantastic rear guard effort from Richer, Raines and Raymond saw Swanton reach 165 for nine.

Swanton Morley are away at Gillingham this Saturday.