By Kevin Denmark.
Photos by Dale Clarke.
Swardeston finished their home cricket season on Sunday with a fine victory over The Cambridgeshire County Team, in a pulsating encounter, by 22 runs.
It was a day dominated by the bowlers with the batsmen finding runs hard to come in a match played in glorious Autumn sunshine in front of a healthy crowd.
After winning the toss the home team batted first and after the early loss of Callum Taylor it became clear that batting would be difficult against an accurate seam attack although it was the introduction of spin with Cambridgeshire captain Callum Guest picking up Joe Gatting (20) and Lewis Denmark (10) in quick succession and when he also accounted for Jordan Taylor, the 6th out with the total 137-6 in the 34th over, the visitors were well on top. Taylor had worked hard for a gritty 48 from 87 balls including six fours.
There were useful contributions from Alfie Cooper (26) and Richard Sims, who was last out for 29, as the innings closed a disappointing 187 all out in the final over. Guest was the most successful bowler with 3-32 from his 10 overs.
In reply Cambridgeshire lost Clarke early but the innings followed a similar pattern with runs hard to come by with Seabrook and Milner adding 62 for the second wicket before the latter fell LBW to Joe Flatt for 43. Seabrook (31) was out with the score 95 with the visitors on course for victory albeit only 18 overs remained.
There then followed a remarkable collapse led by Adam Todd who, returning to the attack, picking up four quick wickets as the innings subsided to 111-8 with three wickets falling on that total. Mohammed and Thomason then took the score to 152 and with still 6 overs remaining an unlikely victory still looked possible but Joe Gatting accounted for the aggressive Thomason who struck 58 from just 49 balls to lead his team to victory.
The impressive Todd was star man with the ball taking 5-29 from his 10 overs. The remaining wickets were shared between Gatting (3) and Joe Flatt (2).
With one more week of a truncated season remaining Swardeston head to Mildenhall on Saturday hoping to pick up a minimum of 5 points required to clinch the EAPL North Group division which will then see them playing the winners of the South group in a winner takes all play-off match the following day, also at Mildenhall.