Ottery St Mary II stay in the hunt for a top table berth in 2015
- Credit: Archant
With just three matches of the season remaining, Ottery St Mary 2nd XI remain well placed amongst the contenders for promotion to the Premier League after the long trip to Hatherleigh produced a comfortable seven wicket victory, writes Ian Townsend.
Despite the home side posting a total above 200, fine innings from Steve Forbes and Ed Fowler saw Rick Jackson’s men home with a full 11 overs to spare.
Regular first eleven paceman Jody Clements struck an early blow for the Otters, sending back home opener Niall Leahy (14), courtesy of a Jackson slip catch, and when teenage 2nd XI debutant Luke Tierney removed opposing skipper Ross Cherrington (6), caught by Jody Clements, the total stood at 35-2.
Rob Chapman and Prince Joseph added a useful 38 before Chapman (20) edged Zac Johns behind to Trevor Griffin and Prince (19) was bowled by giant seamer, Rob Johns. The home side’s innings then centred upon a solid 64-run knock from Nick Rogers (100 balls with 11 fours) who eventually fell lbw to Rob Johns.
Jack Barkwell’s rapid 21 from 20 balls was ended by Jody Clements’s caught and bowled before Rob Johns claimed a third victim, bowling Kirk Forgham for a duck to return an excellent 3-21 from his nine overs.
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Richard Tidball’s obdurate 25 not out guided the home side past the 200 mark, but a total of 206-7 appeared vulnerable, given the strength of the visitors’ batting line up.
Ottery’s reply suffered an immediate set back as Richard Kitzinger was caught by Josh Brock from the opening delivery of the innings, but the visitors fought back well in the shape of an excellent 89-run stand compiled in 18 overs by a typically aggressive Ed Fowler and the solid looking Steve Forbes.
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Numerous powerful drives saw Fowler reach 54 (nine fours and two sixes) before falling lbw to Cherrington. Despite Griffin (2) soon offering a catch to Rogers off Tidball, the ever reliable Alex Clements then leant sound support to Forbes who was now beginning to hit his straps. Once the score had passed 150, boundaries began to flow from the bats of both men and a comfortable victory was clinched in style as the last 56 runs were added from just six overs. Forbes remained unbeaten on 81 (14 fours) with Alex Clements posting 41 not out from just 44 balls.
This weekend the Otters face strugglers, Plymouth 3rd XI before hosting local rivals Budleigh in a crunch derby which could prove crucial in deciding which of the East Devon sides ply their trade at the top table in 2015!
Hatherleigh 206-7 (N Rogers 64, R Tidball 25*, J Barkwell 21, R Chapman 20, R Johns 3-29, J Clements 2-40) Ottery St Mary 209-3 (S Forbes 81*, E Fowler 54, A Clements 41*). Ottery St Mary (20pts) bt Hatherleigh (6pts) by 7 wkts.
Otters Man of the Match – Steve Forbes