Double delight for Sidmouth CC as 1st and 2nd XIs win as halfway point of league season is reached

Anthony Griffiths batting for Sidmouth at Ottery. Ref shsp 25 18TI 5797. Picture: Terry Ife

Anthony Griffiths batting for Sidmouth at Ottery. Ref shsp 25 18TI 5797. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

The halfway point in the Tolchards Devon Cricket League season was reached on the final day of June and both Sidmouth 1st and 2nd XIs won their respective games. It all means that, with nine match days to play, Sidmouth 1st XI sit third in the Premier Division, four points shy of leaders Exeter, the 2nd XI top C Division East by a margin of 25 points, and the 3rd XI, who were without a game in their F Division East campaign, lie second, five points behind leaders Bradninch 2mds and a point ahead of third placed Upottery 2nds.

1st XI - Marvellous Mgijima as Sidmouth win last over thriller against Exmouth

South African Aviwe Mgijima was the star act as Sidmouth secured a two wicket win over Exmouth at the Fortfield.

After Exmouth won the toss and opted to bat, Mgijima took the first wicket and went on to claim four for 39 from weight overs as the visitors were bowled out for 263 in 49 overs and then he hit an unbeaten 104 from the number four berth as Sidmouth got home with two wickets and just three balls to spare. Mind you, it is also most worthy of mention, the part played by number 10 bat Charlie Miles, who joined the South African with the Fortfield men 200-8, but the pair added 64 for the unbroken ninth wicket to see their side home.

After Mgijima had sent back opener Sandy Allen without scoring, Robbie Powell held a catch behind off Zach Bess to leave Exmouth 40-2. The third wicket took the score to 116 when a Henry Gater catch off Scott Barlow saw and end to a fine 40-ball, 10 boundary knock of 48 by Miles Lenygon. The total moved onto 173 when the fifth wicket fell, that of Bob Dawson, who was caught by Dec Lines off Will Murray for a run-a-ball 23 and it was soon 118-7 with the losses of first Andrew Buzza, caught and bowled by Mgijima without troubling the scorers and then Peter Turnbull was bowled by Mgijima for four.

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Billy Rudolph was the eighth Exmouth bat to fall, bowled by Scott Barlow for two with the score then 207-8. The ninth wicket saw Exmouth rally to take the total to 253-9 when a fine innings from number six bat David Lye came to and end, but not before he had scored 54, from just 50 deliveries, hitting eight fours before being caught by Zach Bess to give Mgijima his fourth wicket. The end came soon after with Alvin Pollard trapped leg before by Charlie Miles for a hard-hitting 23-ball 37 with two fours and three sixes. George Greenway, with two, was the not out batsman as Exmouth closed on 263 with one of their 50 overs remaining. Mgijima returned the best figures, 4-39 from eight and there were two wicket hauls for Scott Barlow, 2-41 from nine and Charlie Miles, 2-56 from 10 overs. The other wickets fell to Zach Bess (1-33 from eight) and Will Murray (1-59 from 10). Elliott Rice and Dec Lines launched the run chase, but both were back in the Fortfield pavilion with just 17 runs on the board, Rice caught for 10 and Lines caught for two. Zach Bess joined skipper Luke Bess, and they took the total to 87 when Zach Bess was caught for a 39-ball four boundary 31.

The next man in was Aviwe Mgijima and he and the skipper took the run chase to 112 when Bess fell for a 47-ball, seven boundary 44. Just five runs were added when Henry Gater became the fifth man out with the score on 117. Scott Barlow (15) helped Mgijima add 37 for the sixth wicket and 17 runs later Robbie Powell fell for eight to leave Sidmouth 171-7. Will Murray joined Mgijima and they took the total to 200 when Murray was dismissed for 10. That brought number 10 bat Charlie Miles to the wicket, but there was to be no more success for the visiting bowlers as Miles faced 26 balls and was still there at the end on 18 with Mgijima taking the honours with his wonderful 93-ball unbeaten 104, hitting 11 fours and one six as Sidmouth sealed success halfway through the 50th and final over.

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2nd XI - Ninth straight win for Sidmouth 2nds after victory at Feniton

Sidmouth 2nds completed the first half of their Tolchards Devon League C Division East campaign with a perfect record of played nine and won nine as they secured an 85-run win over Feniton at their Acland Park home.

Batting first, Sidmouth were given an 89 run start before losing their first wicket with Matt Cooke stumped for a seven boundary 43. The previous weekends double centurion, Issac Thomas passed his half century before he fell for 57, but then Nick Gingell topped that offering with 69, a knock that included seven fours and three sixes and, from the number four berth, Nick Mansfield becoming the teams third half centurion on the day with his contribution being 52. Byron Knowles, at five and skipper Anthony Griffiths, at six, chipped in with knocks of 34 and 31 respectively as Sidmouth closed on an imposing 316-6 from their 45 overs.

A ninth straight win was duly sealed, but they were unable to secure a full house of 20 points as a battling home side closed on 231-8.

Skipper Griffiths rang the bowling changes at regular intervals using no fewer than eight of his team to turn their arms over in a bid to winkle out all 10 home batsmen. However, it was not to be and, at stumps, the best of the bowling returns was the 2-12 from five overs by opener Thomas Simmons and Fionn Wardrop, who shared new ball duties, bowled a full shift of nine overs for his return of 2-38.

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