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East Anglian Premier League: Horsford triumph sets up survival shoot-out

Ben France took five wickets for Horsford against Sudbury. Picture: Simon Finlay

Ben France took five wickets for Horsford against Sudbury. Picture: Simon Finlay

Horsford's hopes of steering clear of relegation have been given a huge boost - to set up a survival shoot-out with Woolpit on the final day of the season.

Ryan Findlay’s side travelled to mid-table Sudbury trailing Woolpit by six points at the bottom of the table. The visitors won the toss and decided to bat first but their chances of winning were precariously balanced after managing to score just 157, with Aidan Justus top scoring on 44 and Norfolk skipper Chris Brown finishing unbeaten on 26.

However, five wickets from Ben France and four from Brown saved the day, dismissing Sudbury for 114 inside 36 overs to take a maximum 30 points in a 43-run triumph.

The day got even better for Horsford though when news of Great Witchingham’s seven-wicket win at Woolpit came through.

The Suffolk side were bowled out for just 106, as Norfolk’s opening batsman James Spelman took six wickets, before Sam Arthurton scored an unbeaten 50 as the Witches reached their total for the loss of three wickets.

Just one league point for Woolpit leaves Horsford in the driving seat ahead of the relegation rivals meeting at Manor Park on Saturday.

If the hosts can seal their survival it will also be of interest to their second XI, who won the Division One title in the Norfolk Alliance but will not be promoted if their first team go down.

Elsewhere, Swardeston already had the title wrapped up before a rain-affected home draw with Norwich, declaring on 365 for nine with Joe Gatting scoring 112 and Freddie Ruffell 77. The visitors did not get to have a bat.

The rain helped Vauxhall Mallards to a home draw against Burwell though, having been bowled out for 179 and the visitors on 35 without loss when the match was abandoned, opener Luke Caswell top scoring with 46 for the Ducks and Hudson De Lucchi also chipping in with 44.

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