A FEATURE of the Millers first team in the latter half of 2010 and the start of this season has been inconsistency and Saturday’s game against Walton-on-Trent at Station Road was a prime example.
After an excellent batting display at Ockbrook the previous week, the Millers slumped to 155 all out and an eight wicket defeat.
Langley Mill lost the toss and were asked to bat first in overcast, humid conditions on a track freshened up by overnight rain.
The previous week’s centurion Jamie Salmons could manage only two this week before he was stumped by David Preston, off James Mason, with the Millers total on 12.
Sri Lankan Sajendra Thimal was making his first appearance of the season but, despite a huge six off Andy Lathbury, the bowler had the last laugh, removing the overseas for ten, with 30 on the board.
Meanwhile, Aaron Tullett continued his run of 40s scores departing for 42, well caught by Phil Preston, off James Blackwell, with the score on 80.
The Millers middle order failed to recover the situation and wickets fell at regular intervals. Next to go was Jack Scott, caught by Andy Easter, off Phil Preston, for 34 followed quickly by Andrew Bailey, bowled by Blackwell for four.
With 109 on the board, the hosts sixth wicket went down as Jeff Wharton was caught by Easter for a duck to give Phil Preston his second.
On 117, Paul Bailey edged Blackwell to keeper David Preston with his score on 15 and on 119, Grant Ball was run out for a single.
New signing Andy Sibley gave Phil Preston his 3-for, caught by Ed Chapman for 10 but David Farnsworth produced a flurry of runs later on helping the Millers to 155 before last man Luke Rowley was bowled for a single to give Phil Preston his fourth. Farnsworth remained unbeaten on 19.
For the visitors Phil Preston returned 4 for 38 and Blackwell 3 for 43. Lathbury and Mason picked up a wicket each.
The Langley Mill bowlers were much less wayward than the previous game but had too few runs to defend. Walton cruised to victory with 15 overs to spare, and lost only two wickets in the process.
Alex Paget was bowled by Andrew Bailey for 13, and Easter was trapped leg before off Rowley on the same unlucky score.
Opener Mark Clewes was the hero for the visitors with a hard hitting unbeaten innings of 101 which lacked finesse but achieved the desired result.
His innings included 16 fours and came off 132 balls.
Of the bowlers, Rowley’s six overs returned figures of 1 for 23 and Andrew Bailey’s 11 overs came at a cost of 30 for his solitary wicket.