Otters thirds sunk on a sticky Cully wicket


- Credit: Archant

Fresh from a big win over table-toppers Feniton, Ottery found themselves playing away against the new league leaders, Cullompton, writes Kit Richards.

The toss was always going to be crucial, following 24 hours of rain and Richard Kitzinger duly lost it - predictably the hosts chose to insert the Otters.

It was the fifth over before Barry Flicker managed to score the first run off the bat as the ball could not be relied upon to bounce truly off the pitch. He fell soon after for four and his replacement Henry Mutter looked to be more positive but was undone by the pace of Rob McManus for only eight. Jack Ellison struggled manfully to protect his wicket, but a long vigil was ended without score in the twelfth over. This brought in Kitzinger to join Sam Bowyer-Thornton, though the latter was soon to fall leg before to McManus for five, becoming his third victim of the day.

Rebuilding was required and young George Mutter showed great resolve to partner his skipper. Together they put on 47 runs until Mutter edged one to slip just after drinks for 16. This brought in debutant Jack Dallyn who showed maturity well beyond his years to support Kitzinger for a further 7 overs, making 8 runs in the process. Steve Ellison followed his son’s lead and batted for a long time without scoring, helping Kitzinger to secure two more batting points. After Kitzinger fell in the last over for 96, Ellison struck a four to get off the mark and nudge Ottery to 160-7, a good few more than had looked likely on a very tricky wicket.

The Cullompton players, however, knew how to bat on their pitch which had by now dried out nicely and they wasted no time in setting about reaching their target. Paceman Joe Button dismissed opener Steve Paul for 16 and George Mutter soon claimed Guy Durant, caught by Neil McNamara for one, but Tom Hardy and Ewan Tinley both scored unbeaten half centuries as they raced to the win, stretching their lead at the top of the table. It had been a hard lesson in adult cricket for the young Otters, up against it ever since losing the toss.

You may also want to watch:

Ottery St Mary 3rd XI 160-7 (R Kitzinger 96, R McManus 3-11) Cullompton 161-2 (E Tinley 74*, T Hardy 57*). Cullompton (20pts) bt Ottery St Mary (3pts) by 8 wickets.

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