Sidmouth CC on matchday 11 which, in recent times, has proved to be a day for big first wicket stands

Dan Powell begins the walk back to the pavilion after his innings of 95 atBradninch

Dan Powell begins the walk back to the pavilion after his innings of 95 atBradninch - Credit: Archant

East Devon-based cricket clubs will no doubt be waiting in anticipation for news to come from the Devon League with regard to what remains of the 2020 cricket season.

Josh Bess batting for Sidmouth in the win over North Devon. Picture GERRY HUNT

Josh Bess batting for Sidmouth in the win over North Devon. Picture GERRY HUNT - Credit: Archant

This coming Saturday (July 11) may well see some local teams play hastily arranged friendlies or ‘in-house’ fixtures ahead of some form of competitive, Devon League organised, competitive cricket from as soon as the following Saturday (July 18).

Had the 2020 Tolchards Devon League season been in full regular swing then this coming Saturday would have been matchday 11, the second fixture of the second half of the campaign.

Hopefully, from next week, we shall be able to report on some ‘live’ 2020 action, but for now we are continuing with our feature on ‘bygone seasons’.

And 12 months ago, matchday 11 was played out on July 13 and Sidmouth made the short trip across to Exmouth where they won a Premier Division meeting by 136 runs.

Sidmouth III skipper David Watkins hits out

Sidmouth III skipper David Watkins hits out - Credit: Archant

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Batting first, Sidmouth chalked up an imposing total of 347-6, led there by a Josh Bess century. Bess scored 113 and Alex Barrow was on 99 when he was trapped leg before wicket with the openers adding 207 for the second wicket. The home side were then bowled out for 210 in 43.2 overs with the main wicket takers being Zac Bess (3-41), Josh Bess (3-41) and Max Hanock (2-34).

Sidmouth II were in C Division East action and they registered a 23-run win in their home game against Alphington. Sidmouth batted first and, with runs from Nick Mansfield (90), Jash Patidar (46no) - this from just 32 balls faced – and Byron Knowles (45), were able to close on 299-5. Exeter City Football Club manager Matt Taylor then hit a century for the Alphas. The City boss finally out to a Byron Knowles catch off the bowling of Jordan Fowler. Fowler finished with figures of 2-71 and Charlie Dibble also bagged a brace of wickets as the Exeter-based side closed on 276-6.

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Completing a good day for the club, Sidmouth III were three wicket winners of their home E Division East meeting with Upottery II. There were two wickets each for Louis Adey, Saj Patidar, David Gibson and Tim Chapman as Upottery were bowled out for 160. Chapman then top scored with 64 and Lee Clayden chipped in with a 57-ball unbeaten 46 as Sidmouth eased home with three wickets and two balls shy of five overs, to spare.

Season 2018

Matchday 11 was contested on July 14 and Sidmouth 1st XI suffered a narrow seven run defeat in their home Premier Division meeting with Plymouth. The visitors batted first and closed on 277-8 with the bulk of the wicket taking falling to Aviwe Mgijima (3-56), Max Hancock (2-47) and Josh Bess (2-48). The Sidmouth reply slipped from 199-4 to 234-9 before Max Hanock joined number eight bat Will Murray and the pair so nearly turned things round with Hanock the last man out, falling to the penultimate delivery of the match, having scored 15 with the score on 270.

Murray was unbeaten on 31and the earlier home runs came from Luke Bess, with 74 and Matt Cooke, with 32.

Sidmouth 2nd XI also suffered defeat as they went down by 20 runs on their C Division East visit to Clyst Hydon. The Mid Devon villagers batted first and closed on 294-4 with Sidmouth using seven bowlers, four of whom got a single wicket. Tom Wainwight led the run chase with 64 and number eight bat Ed Hurley did his best to turn the game round with a 44-ball nine boundary 56. Byron Knowles chipped in with 38, but the final Sidmouth wicket fell with the score on 274 to consign the side to a 20-run defeat.

Sidmouth III bucked the matchday 11 losing trend for the Fortfield men as they defeated Clyst St George 2nd XI by 153 runs. David Watkins (82), Ben Sapiecha (74) and Thomas Moore (60) combined to see Sidmouth to an imposing 311-7.

Wes Holmes (3-21), Tim Drake (2-21) and single wickets for Thomas Burhop, Graham Munday, Ben Sapiecha and Thomas Moore, saw the villagers bowled out for 158.

Season 2017

Matchday 11 was played out on July 15 and it saw Sidmouth 1st XI involved in a high scoring affair at the Fortfield where they defeated Bradninch by six wickets. On a superb batting track, no fewer than 657 runs were scored for the loss of 11 wickets. Bradninch batted first and posted a healthy return of 328-7 led there by their overseas player Matt Foster who hit a 128-ball 27-boundary 177. Scott Barlow (2-67) and Josh Bess (2-80) were the most successful of the home bowlers. The run chase began badly with opener Matt Cooke dismissed without troubling the scorers! However, the Bess boys then combined to see the Fortfield men to victory with a full five overs remaining! Zac Bess faced just 44 deliveries for a wonderful 137 – a knock that included eight fours and as many sixes!

Josh Bess faced 106 deliveries for his 120, hitting a dozen fours and four sixes and Luke Bess hit a run-a-ball 43.

Sidmouth 2nd XI were 51-run winners of the Premier 2nd XI game at Budleigh Salterton II. Batting first, half centuries from Nick Mansfield (53) and David Watkins (56) led Sidmouth to a close of 234-7. Charlie Dibble and Daley Holmes then each bagged a brace of wickets as Budleigh closed on 183-6.

Sidmouth III lost their B Division East 2nd XI meeting at home to Shobrooke Park, going down by 87 runs. The visitors batted first and closed on 257-5 with four of the wickets taken by father-and-son duo Rob and Jordan Fowler. Miles Dalton then top scored with 76 from the opening berth, but with David Gibson, batting at number six, the only other batsman into double figures – the other nine batsmen could only accumulate 30 between them – Sidmouth were eventually bundled out for 170 in 41.3 overs.

Season 2016

July 16 saw the playing of matchday 11 fixtures and Sidmouth were 40-run winners of their Premier Division game at Bovey Tracey. Luke Bess (61), Henry Gater (53no), Zac Bess (44) and Dan Powell (31), combined to see the Fortfield men to a total of 263-7. Kyle Brockely (3-18), Charlie Miles (2-57), Henry Gater (2-32) and Zac Bess (2-25), then combined to see Bovey bowled out for 223 in 45.2 overs.

In their Premier Division 2nd XI fixture, Sidmouth II thrashed visiting Bovey Tracey II by eight wickets. On a day when the opening seamers had no joy, it was third change Daley Holmes who took the bowling honours with a splendid return of 5-47 and there were two wickets each for fourth change Saj Patidar and Nick Mansfield while a Tom Simmons throw accounted for a run out as Bovey were bowled out for 146 in 41.2 overs. Sidmouth slipped to 33-2 before Anthony Griffiths (77no) and Saj Patidar (26no) saw their side to a comfortable success.

Making it a club hat-trick of wins were Sidmouth III who defeated Thorverton by five wickets in a B Division East 2nd XI meeting. Max Hanock (3-29), Tim Drake (2-18) and single wickets from Wes Holmes, Jordan Fowler, Charlie Dibble and Toby Seldon, saw the Thors bowled out for 155 and then Graham Munday (53), Sam Cavin (31) and an unbeaten 28 from Wes Holmes, saw the third XI to a comprehensive success.

Season 2015

Exactly five years ago this Saturday (July 11), Sidmouth 1st XI were winning by five wickets on their Premier Division visit to Bovey Tracey. The home side batted first and were bowled out for 190 with the bulk of the wickets falling to Liam Lewis (3-34), Charlie Miles (3-46) and Miles Dalton (3-27). Sidmouth’s run chase saw them slip to 114-5 before Will Sobczak (38) joined Anthony Griffiths (37) and the pair saw their side to victory.

Sidmouth II were 181-run winners of their home Premier Division 2nd XI meeting with Sandford II. The match saw a triple century opening partnership with Sidmouth openers Dan Powell (165) and Matt Hewer (104), taking the score to 301 before the first wicket fell! The Fortfield men closed on 370-9 and then used eight bowlers to try and winkle out a bullish Sandford who closed on 189-7 after their allotted 45 overs. Charlie Dibble was the most successful of the home bowlers with a return of 3-26.

Sidmouth III made it a day of triple success for the Fortfield teams as they defeated Axminster II by 94-runs in a B Division East 2nd XI game. Batting first, Sidmouth were bowled out for 203, but they then bundled the Axemen out for just 109.

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