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Swardeston cruise to victory at Mildenhall despite losing two early wickets

PUBLISHED: 05:57 26 June 2017

Luke Schlemmer hits a six for Great Witchingham last Saturday as Cambridge Granta wicket-keeper Michael Pepper looks on. Picture: Tim Ferley

Luke Schlemmer hits a six for Great Witchingham last Saturday as Cambridge Granta wicket-keeper Michael Pepper looks on. Picture: Tim Ferley

Archant

Swardeston recovered from a disastrous start to record an emphatic win at Mildenhall - and set the scene perfectly for a showdown with the one side above them in the table.

Mark Thomas’ team will be going into Saturday’s home clash with leaders Sudbury in good heart after making 261 at Wamil Way and then bowling their hosts out for just 110.

But despite winning by 151 runs it certainly wasn’t plain sailing for the defending champions, who found themseves 4-2 after just three balls after being put into bat.

Former West Indies star Tino Best was the destroyer-in-chief, having Peter Lambert caught by Jack Loveday first ball before bowling Stephen Gray for four after his second delivery had been hit to the boundary.

Best also accounted for Jason Reynolds in a fiery opening spell, while Swardeston lost two more wickets in reaching 52, but Essex starlet Callum Taylor stood firm amidst the carnage and found a willing ally in his brother Jordan as the tide gradually began to turn.

They took the score up to 136 before Callum fell just eight short of his century, trapped leg before by Murtaza Hussain after hitting 15 fours, but Jordan (45), Freddie Ruffell (38), Jeremy Elliott (28) and Thomas (23 not out) all built on the good work to get the visitors over 250, As it turned out it was more than enough, with Ruffell taking 3-42 and Joe Gatting 3-23 as Mildenhall slumped to a heavy defeat, with Adam Trett unable to bat.

The win kept Swardeston 21 points behind Sudbury, who saw off visitors Horsford by six wickets after dismissing them for just 117. The visitors toiled for over 53 overs for their runs, with Robbie Bridgstock, Ryan Findlay and Chris Brown all producing scores in the 20s, but Sudbury cruised home in the 29th over, with opener Tom Huggins unbeaten on 74.

A superb late fightback proved too little, too late as Norwich lost their basement battle at Bury St Edmunds to slip to within 16 points of the foot of the table.

The visitors’ total of 229-7, featuring an innings of 114 from Will O’Donnell, looked set to be overhauled in some comfort after Bury reached 223-4 in reply, with plenty of time left.

But five wickets then fell without the addition of a single run, four of them going to O’Donnell, before a four from last man Charlie Cook settled the issue.

Vauxhall Mallards were well beaten at Copdock and Old Ipswichian after an unbeaten 123 from former Essex player Jaik Mickleburgh had guided the home side to 305-5. Matt Plater scored a half century in reply but Mallards fell well short after being bowled out for 197.

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