Clements’ Ottery cameo

A very wet and green wicket saw two high quality bowling attacks dominate Ottery St Mary 1st XI’s clash with Ashburton as the Salston Field side emerged from their trip to South Devon with a hard fought and much-needed second victory of the season, writes Ian Townsend.

Excellent opening spells from Will Harrison and Mark Woodman reduced the home side to 27-4, the former producing trademark in-swinging yorkers to trap both Tom Durman (6) and Ashley Berry (1) lbw whilst the latter induced Kevin Nicholls (1) to dolly a leading edge to Sam Tennant before castling Chris Pascoe with fine ‘nip-backer’.

Tom Lacey (26) and Greg Marshall (22) restored some order with a steady 54 run stand occupying 14 overs but, after Marshall wandered out of his crease to be embarrassingly stumped off paceman Harrison, quick thinking keeper, Trevor Griffin rolling the ball up to the stumps, Ashburton’s tail collapsed like a pack of cards to 117 all out.

The returning Woodman (5-29) captured three wickets in an over to claim the umpteenth ‘five-fer’ of his long career, excellent support coming from Harrison (3-27). Griffin produced a polished display of wicket keeping on a far from easy track.

In reply, Ottery were soon deep in trouble in the face of excellent opening spells from Tom Durman and, in particular, Marcus West. Durman induced Tennant (0) to edge behind to Berry before yorking Jack Pritchard for a duck whilst West’s well directed out swing saw Griffin (1) also fall to a catch at the wicket. Will Munford (19 including three fours and a six) briefly resisted in typically belligerent style before presenting a return catch to West as the Otters slipped to 26-4.

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The ship was steadied by teenagers, George Biggs and Sam Loud (15) who compiled a careful 30 run stand before the latter was trapped lbw by the off spin of Ashley Harvey. With Alex Clements (1) soon being yorked by West, to leave Ottery at 59-6, the contest was in the balance before the in-coming Jody Clements produced a crucial cameo.

With Biggs playing an excellent sheet anchor role, Clements (22) ‘teed off’, dispatching a Tom Durman over for 14 as a crucial 40 runs were rapidly added. Dom Durman produced a ‘jaffa’ to remove the Otters’ skipper but Biggs, who remained unbeaten on a solid 31(4 x 4s), and James Faulkner (6) took Ottery to the brink of a vital victory which duly arrived shortly after the latter was caught by West off Dom Durman. The impressive West returned 3-27 for the Ashes.

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