Batters fail to fire as Bradenham fall to another defeat

Bradenham's cricketers lost by 96 runs to Swardeston 2nd XI at The Green

Bradenham's cricketers lost by 96 runs to Swardeston 2nd XI at The Green - Credit: Tim Evans

Bradenham's top order batters once again failed to fire as they fell to a fourth consecutive defeat. 

The Bears played host to Swardeston 2nd XI on Saturday, looking to get back on track after a series of damaging losses. 

But the home side fell well short in their pursuit of Swardeston's 276 as they were bowled out for just 180 in 38 overs at The Green. 

It leaves them seventh in Division One of the Norfolk Cricket Alliance, one place above local rivals Dereham who they will face in a crucial match this weekend. 

After winning the toss the visitors chose to bat, but Bradenham opening bowler Tom Donnelly trapped Daniel Martin (7) lbw in his second over.

Benjamin Shearing and Matthew Long managed to put on 56 for the second wicket, before the latter was bowled by Will Dewing for 28. 

And Dewing quickly accounted for captain George Walker, who was caught at slip by Marcus Evans for 14. 

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However, it was the middle order combination of Jeremy Elliott (79) and Edward Botwright (39) which proved crucial, as Swardeston went on to make a useful 276. 

Dewing was the pick of the bowlers, taking 3-43. 

In reply, Bradenham's top-order batters struggled again. Brendan Scott, Matthew Blowers and Joshua Watts were all out in the first six overs with just 13 runs on the board. 

Facing a chastening defeat, the Bears mustered a mini recovery courtesy of Rob Ellis and Dewing, before skipper Ellis went to a brilliant low catch by Elliot Fox at cover. 

Jeff Turner (27) provided some useful support but, when Dewing was caught on the boundary for a well-made 73, Bradenham were staring down the barrel. 

And there was little resistance from their their tail-enders in the closing stages as Swardeston secured a 96-run victory. 

Dewing, Bradenham's man of the match, said: "We bowled well early on but let them get away a bit in the middle overs. They probably finished with 50 more than they should have done.

"Batting-wise, again we didn’t start well and never really recovered.”

The match was sponsored by Fabulous Flowers by Helen. Bradenham Cricket Club's main sponsor is WC Liittleproud and Son.