Junior players make most of Sidmouth 3rds' chances

After what was described as a poor performance at Bradninch the previous Saturday, it was important that Sidmouth bounced back at Plymstock.

After what was described as a poor performance at Bradninch the previous Saturday, it was important that Sidmouth bounced back at Plymstock. The omens were not good, as Sean Priestley was once again unavailable, David Watkins got a summer job offer in the USA and Charlie Miles strained his back, and all that after the side was selected on Wednesday evening! With Dave Gibson, Tom Overthrow and Ashley Caldwell also unavailable the side was very different from the previous Saturday. Mike Dibble was back at the helm and, also returning after playing for the 2nd XI the previous weekend, were Bob Macey and Robbie Powell. There were also call ups for new overseas signing Angus McVey, Craig Ritchie and Dominic Bess, 11, possibly the youngest player to represent Sidmouth in league cricket? So four old stagers and seven youngsters went into battle and the end result of a losing draw showed that the side has plenty of fight in it after they failed to reach their target by only 10 runs. The day started well as the toss was won and Plymstock were asked to bat. It got better when Plymstock were 96 for 6 as Bess claimed his second wicket when Powell took an outstanding catch. However, the one taken by Matt Hill was even better, low down at mid off as a Tyran Le Roux full toss was smashed back at him. Unfortunately, Plymstock started putting partnerships together with the seventh wicket falling at 137 and the eighth not until near the end of the 50 overs. A total of 217 for 9 looked a good one on that wicket. In addition to Bess taking 2 for 29, there was a good bowling performance from Tom Chaplin who sent down 14 overs and took 2 for 37. Le Roux finished with 2 for 25 and there were steady spells from Andy Green, Hill and McVey. Hill and McVey both took a wicket apiece. In the field there were further catches for Martyn Dean, Dibble, another one for Powell and Chaplin.Some chances were also spilt and this is a part of the game that needs to be improved, especially by the younger players who could do worse than watch the 1st XI to see how concentration, body language and fitness all help towards making a good fielder.Sidmouth's reply had a steady start before Macey was bowled for 17 with the score on 31. Dibble and McVey put on 96 and victory looked to be within sight, but both got out to bad balls. McVey was caught at point off a wide half volley for an excellent 57 and Dibble was caught at deep extra cover off a long hop for 45 with the score on 142. Robbie Powell came in at No. 4 and, after a nervous start, started to show why he is getting rave reviews with the under-15s. He played quite beautifully in a partnership with Ritchie that took Sidmouth within sight of victory. Ritchie also played his best innings for Sidmouth before being bowled for 13 with the score on 188. Chaplin joined Powell and made 12 before also being bowled. Powell finished on 39 not out and Dean 1 not out as the fifth batting point was safely bagged. So a hard-earned 11 points were gained to keep the side well above the relegation zone. However, the students start returning this weekend so the team should now be looking upwards in the table. With good availability, the side should certainly win more than they lose before the end of the season. Some, who have played in May and June will be on the fringes of the side from now on, but, hopefully, they will have learnt a lot over the past few weeks. There is plenty of Sunday and midweek cricket to play and they must be ready when their next chance arrives.This Saturday, the opposition are Barton who arrive at Bicton just one point below Sidmouth in the table. Finally, thanks to Colin Whitehall and Rex Sims for officiating as umpire and scorer. Plymstock 2nd XI v Sidmouth 3rd XI - Saturday 20th June 2009: Plymstock 217-9 (H Kerton 63, J Hocking 28, M Cherry 20; T Chaplin 2-37, T Le Roux 2-25, D Bess 2-29), Sidmouth 208-5 (A McVey 57, M Dibble 45, R Powell 39no; S Ali 2-44, L Savage 2-25). Plymstock (13pts) drew with Sidmouth (11).

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