Plumtree hold out to frustrate KICC

Kimberley batsman Akhil Patel faces a delivery against Plumtree on Saturday.
Kimberley batsman Akhil Patel faces a delivery against Plumtree on Saturday.

KICC 1st XI 218-8 drew with Plumtree 1st XI 190-5

With all other NPL fixtures called off, Kimberley had a great chance to gain a march on their rivals and pick up maximum points at home against newly-promoted Plumtree.

But the visitors had other ideas as they showed plenty of pluck and had their batting not lost its momentum they may even have won the game as the home team fought back to secure a winning draw.

Kimberley’s new-look opening partnership of debutant Dan Birch (96) and Jon Terry (17) strode out to the crease after being put into bat and Birch soon hooked Matt Milnes (2-57) for six in the first over.

Terry initially carried the attack, striking a six over point and several more boundaries in the same region before he hit Moshin Qayyum (3-45) straight to third man and had to be on his way.

Paldip Sidhu, trapped lbw by Milnes, followed for a duck and when Akhil Patel fell to Qayyum in the 16th over Kimberley were in a spot of bother at 54-3.

Captain Sam Ogrizovic joined Birch at the crease and a partnership of 57 followed before Ogrizovic ran himself out to leave the score 111-4 in the 25th over.

James Mann (17) joined Birch as he continued on his way to what seemed like an inexorable debut century before leg-spinner Rana rained on the parade, trapping him lbw an agonising four runs short of three figures.

Mann followed in the next over and from 151-4 Kimberley had slipped to 151-6, but Paul Riley (43*) and Dominic Wheatley (15) added 56 for the seventh wicket and a final total of 218-8 seemed more than defendable.

Matt Wright (2-39) and spinner Chris Glover took the new ball but Kimberley had to wait until the 11th over for the first wicket when Wright strangled Finney down the leg-side and Ogrizovic took a smart catch with just 20 on the board.

Caleb Mierkalns (56) set about the bowling with alacrity and Sam Storey (85) proved an able foil as the pair kept Plumtree in the hunt with an impressive stand of 91.

But Mann (1-22) made the vital breakthrough, trapping the pugnacious Mierkalns lbw to leave it 111-2 in the 28th over.

Plumtree’s middle order then lost its way as Richard Adams (1-40) dismissed Matt Wood lbw and Wright, in his second spell, had Jason Stockdale well caught by Mann to leave the scoreboard reading 149-4 in the 40th.

Kimberley did grab the fifth wicket when Storey drove Wheatley (1-18) to Patel at cover, but Paul White (18*) helped guide Plumtree safely to a losing draw in a useful sixth-wicket stand.

The first XI visit Papplewick this weekend.

Unsurprisingly the bad weather put paid to any other cricket with the seconds and fourths’ matches being cancelled on Saturday, and Sunday’s games going the same way.

The first XI’s National Club Championship match with Denby will now be played this weekend.