Deluge ruins intriguing contest at Ottery
- Credit: Archant
Salston Field, the home of Ottery St Mary CC, is frequently the venue for high scoring contests, writes Ian Townsend.
The visit of table topping Ivybridge for last weekend’s 1st XI fixture was therefore an interesting departure from the norm as the combination of a greenish track and humid conditions saw wickets tumble. Both attacks took full advantage as the visitors were hustled out for just 130 after which the Otters were struggling in reply when an early evening deluge terminated proceedings.
After Ivybridge won the toss, home pacemen Will Harrison (2-27) and Ollie Reed produced fine spells to put the visitors firmly on the back foot. Opener Abraham Kopparambil (2) sportingly walked after feathering a Harrison delivery down the leg side to Billy Reed and when Andy Johnson (18) was run out, courtesy of Alex Thurgate’s terrific return from the deep, and Adam Huxtable (4) skied a catch to Billy Rudolph off Harrison, Ivybridge had slipped to 29-3.
Without ever looking secure, Chris Greenhouse and overseas import Jeewan de Silva (17) affected something of a recovery, adding 39 before a pacey Joe Birch delivery saw the latter top edge an attempted pull to Rob Crabb at mid-wicket. After Greenhouse (17) then edged a Rudolph outswinger behind to Billy Reed and Jody Clements claimed the wickets of Gareth Andrews (4), who fell to a sharp return catch, and George Thompson (0) who provided Billy Reed with a third victim, at 84-7 Ivybridge were in danger of failing to make three figures. However, visiting skipper Kelvin Trent was toughing it out and, in tail-ender Pete Abraham, he found a staunch ally as 40 priceless runs were added.
Abraham’s hard hitting cameo (20 with a six and three fours) ended as he was castled by the returning Ollie Reed and when Trent (29) holed out to Clements (3-28), well held by George Biggs in the deep, the end soon followed as James Bullock appeared unfortunate to adjudged lbw to Ollie Reed (2-22).
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The Otters’ reply was immediately plunged into disarray as first Biggs (1) played on to an excellent ’nip-backer’ from the rapid Bullock, then Rudolph (9) fell to a catch at the wicket off Abraham when it appeared that the ball had come off his thigh pad. The impressive Bullock (2-14) soon claimed a second scalp as he penetrated a tentative forward prod from Mickey Wilkinson (2) to trap the former Torquay man lbw. Billy Reed (2) failed to show the application necessary as his wild drive produced a thin edge behind to Thompson off Abraham (2-18) and with the home side staring down the barrel at 32-4, only Clements (14*) looked remotely secure.
A brief, but torrential downpour ensued but after an extended delay, sunshine returned and both teams appeared keen to resume the contest with the Otters set to require a rain affected total of 73, a further 41 from 13 overs – a challenge in such bowler-friendly conditions, but plausible with some able batsmen still to come.
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Sadly, the umpires then concluded that the underfoot conditions were dangerously slippery and an intriguingly poised contest was abandoned.
Ivybridge 130 (K Trent 29, P Abraham 20, J Clements 3-28, O Reed 2-22, W Harrison 2-27) Ottery St Mary 32-4 (J Bullock 2-14, P Abraham 2-18). Match Abandoned – Rain. Ivybridge 11pts, Ottery St Mary 11pts.
Otters Man of the Match – Jody Clements