A DISAPPOINTING middle order collapse prevented Eastwood Town’s First XI from gaining their 2nd victory of the 2011 campaign as West Bridgfordians secured a 48 run victory.
West Bridgfordians had batted first and they posted a very competitive 229, mainly thanks to a magnificent 105 run opening partnership between batsmen Nick deVilliers and Henry Straw.
The pair both got out in consecutive overs, Straw the first down falling lbw to the occasional spin of Adam Leigh for 57, and deVilliers succumbing to the slow swing of Mark Smith for 37.
There was still work to do by the remaining Bridgfordian batsman, and James Bellshaw (41 runs) and a steady 38 from Andrew Sharpe saw West Bridgford pass 200 with only four wickets down.
At this point they should have gone on to smash a score of around 250, but they threw the bat at everything with abandon which led to a glut of wickets, including four for James Longden.
West Bridgford lost a remarkable seven wickets in five overs, staggering to 229 which would have been disappointing just half an hour earlier.
Eastwood’s reply started very positively, with Adam Smith and Jason Wooliscroft putting on a fifty plus stand for the first wicket for the second week in succession.
After Wooliscroft was dismissed for 23, Leigh came to the crease and batted aggressively. Eastwood cruised past the century mark with ease and looked to be heading towards a great victory.
However, George Orange had other ideas. He got rid of Leigh for 38 and ripped out the heart of Eastwood’s middle order, with the dangerous Gordon Pearson going for just four and Steven Leese for a duck.
Orange’s 3 for 45, alongside Oli Straw claiming the wicket of Adam Smith for 23, helped Eastwood collapse to 119 for 5.
From here Eastwood had to settle for a losing draw to maximise points and Neil Gregory dropped anchor with an unbeaten 32.
In Division F the seconds are enjoying a much more successful season and they made it five win from five fwith a comfortable victory over Whatton & Aslockton.
Whatton batted first and struggled against the pace of Dwayne Buckley and the guile of Dave Summers as they slipped to 41 for 4.
Dan North (37) and Andy Staveley (29) helped to repair the innings, but three wickets for Dean Blake pegged Whatton back and Shaun Stocks took the final two which meant Whatton only posted a moderate 151.
Eastwood wobbled early on as they chased down their target, with North removing the top three batsmen cheaply.
Ryan Elliott added 30 to calm the Eastwood nerves, with a rapid 43 from Mark Stocks seeing Eastwood home with 12 overs to spare.
The thirds also continued their winning streak, and the ten-wicket victory over Kirkby Portland was the best of the lot.
Paul Summers was the star of the show as he took five Kirkby wickets for just 17 runs as Kirkby were shot out for a paltry 34.
Greg Hatherley continued his good form with the ball with another three wicket haul.
Eastwood wasted no time in knocking off the total with Steve Dockrell hitting a six to seal the win in the ninth over.