Friday, June 27, 2014
There was more than a hint of déjà vu in the air as, for the second season in succession; Ottery St Mary 2nd XI suffered a catastrophic batting collapse to slip to a narrow defeat to local rivals, Budleigh who are fast becoming something of a bogey side for the Salston Field men, writes Ian Townsend.
Batting first in ideal conditions, Budleigh were given a flying start as Dan Messam and Lloyd White took advantage of some loose offerings, particularly from teenager Ollie Reed, to race to a 78-run opening stand. However, a change of ends revitalised the Devon Under-15 seamer who produced fine deliveries to castle both Messam (50, with 11 fours) and danger man, Ben Carter (0), thus getting the visitors back into the game. Excellent bowling from the rest of the attack, backed up by superb ground fielding then produced a regular flow of wickets. Left arm spinner Alex Thurgate, who was producing an outstanding spell of beautifully flighted bowling, removed Ed Doble (4), caught and bowled and Joe Marley (12) well held in the deep by George Southall-Brown and despite home skipper, White reaching a well-constructed fifty (eight fours), when Southall-Brown produced a direct hit to run out James England (4), Budleigh had slipped to 150-5.
White’s fine knock was ended at 70 as he swung across a Southall-Brown delivery before Thurgate chipped in with two more scalps to finish with an impressive 4-41 as James Sharkey (9) was smartly stumped by Otters’ skipper Rick Jackson and Shaun Mills (2) was bowled. Southall-Brown’s fine spell (2-27) at the death was rewarded by Jackson’s alert stumping of Joe Gore (2) before Rich Reed bowled Matt Ploughman (0) to wrap up the innings for a modest 180.
As the visitors replied, openers Harry Conway (8) and Ed Fowler never looked particularly comfortable in the face of pacey home seamers Ploughman and Gore.
Ploughman bowled the former as he backed away to leg whilst Fowler (24) prodded tentatively at Gore to be bowled, leaving the total at 56-2. However, as Thurgate and Alex Clements built an increasingly assured partnership, the Otters appeared to be in the box seat.
A fine cut from Thurgate brought up the 100 in the 21st over and despite Mills and White beginning to apply some pressure, at 125-2 with ample overs in hand, an Ottery victory seemed certain. The subsequent departure of both batsmen without further addition changed the game. Clements (38) was very well held at slip off Matt Murphy and Thurgate (34) trapped lbw by White. Budleigh smelt blood and as the Otters’ lower order, many of whom have been required to bat very little this season, panicked, regular wickets began to fall with leg spinner, Marley (4-8), in particular, cashing in as the remaining six wickets fell for just 35 runs to consign the visitors to a chastening first defeat of the season. Jackson’s men will be desperate to return to winning ways this weekend against visiting Plymstock.
Budleigh 180 (L White 70, D Messam 50, A Thurgate 4-41, G Southall-Brown 2-27, O Reed 2-42); Ottery St Mary 160 (A Clements 38, A Thurgate 34, E Fowler 24, J Marley 4-8, L White 2-18, M Murphy 2-29). Budleigh (19pts) bt Ottery St Mary (8pts) by 20 runs.
Otters Man of the Match – Alex Thurgate