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East Anglian Premier League: Great Witchingham off the bottom after first victory

PUBLISHED: 16:38 06 July 2016 | UPDATED: 16:38 06 July 2016

Andy Hanby claims one of his six wickets for Great Witchingham in their first win of the season, at Bury St Edmunds. Picture: KERRY SUTTON

Andy Hanby claims one of his six wickets for Great Witchingham in their first win of the season, at Bury St Edmunds. Picture: KERRY SUTTON

Archant

Great Witchingham finally recorded their first win of the season at the 12th attempt to move off the bottom of the Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League table.

An impressive bowling spell from Andy Hanby was the key as the Witches comfortably saw off the challenge of Bury St Edmunds to climb a couple of places, with both Horsford and Burwell now below them.

A close-season recruit from Sprowston, Hanby returned the excellent figures of 6-44 as Bury were skittled out for 135, with a half century from Sean Park the only bright spot as Essex youngster Callum Taylor went for just 10.

James Spelman (54) and Sam Arthurton (20) then set the platform for a solid reply with an opening partnership of 75 and the Witches got home in the 26th over.

Horsford slipped to the bottom despite turning in a brave effort in a rain-affected match against Vauxhall Mallards. The visitors appeared to be heading for a heavy defeat after being restricted to just 103-7 in 52 overs, with the ever-consistent Paul Bradshaw taking 5-19 and a battling knock of 41 from skipper Ryan Findlay helping his side sneak into three figures.

It was very much a bowlers’ day at Halvergate however and with Norfolk pair Chris Brown (5-22) and Ben France (3-45) constantly chipping away at Mallards it needed a fine 40 from Devon Conway and cool heads from tail-enders Connor Green and Martin Addison to see them over the line by one wicket.

There was drama at the other end of the table when leaders Cambridge Granta fell just 16 runs short of victory against their nearest challengers Swardeston in another weather-affected game.

After being put into bat at Clare College, the visitors were able to use their full allocation of 64 overs and finished with a decent total of 261-9. Stephen Gray (64), Joe Gatting (50) and Lewis Denmark (44) were the main contributors while Anthony Child took 6-76 for Granta. In reply Jonathan Atkinson made 100 not out in just 57 balls while Max Holden hit 73, but it was all to no avail as Granta’s innings was cut short on 246-6 in the 42nd over.

Granta now lead by a point – while Copdock and Old Ipswichian are just 11 points off the top and Mallards 21.

Norwich were beaten in a low-scoring game at Woolpit which could have gone either way.

Ashley Watson’s side were dismissed for only 145, with Oli Higenbottam (46) and Watson (41) getting the bulk of the runs, but then made the opposition work really hard to overhaul them.

When Woolpit slipped to 119-7 an away win looked a distinct possibility but James Holmes’ hard-hitting 27, including five fours, effectively settled the issue.

• The semi-final and final dates for the NW Brown Norfolk Twenty20 have been put back following a series of postponements in the group stages. There are still four qualifying matches to be played at Manor Park so the semi-finals will now be on July 27 and 29, with the final on August 5.

The dates for the remaining group games are: Wednesday – Brooke v Hethersett and TV; Wednesday, July 13 – Norwich v Hethersett and TV; Thursday, July 14 – Gt Witchingham v Sprowston; Wednesday, July 20 – Swardeston v Norwich.

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