Sidmouth title bid hit by rain in game with Bradninch

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Sidmouth’s Francis Clark Devon League Premier Division title bid was hit by the rain when their Fortfield meeting with Bradninch was abandoned.

Sidmouth were 217-7 when the rain arrived with a vengeance to bring a premature end to proceedings.

With rain around, the visiting skipper had no hesitation in asking the Fortfield side to bat first.

Nick Gingell scored all the first 19 runs to be put onto the bard before he became the first wicket, falling in the fourth over. Anthony Griffiths was next to go, out for two with the total on 37. Liam Lewis was third man out, he was dismissed for 30 with the total on 71 and, when Pete Randerson joined him back in the pavilion with 27 to his name, the home side were 109-4.

Devon skipper Josh Bess then took the attack to the Mid Devon side as he and Luke Bess added 74 for the fifth wicket before the former was out for 23.

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Harrison Jones was in, and out, without troubling the scores, but a 40-run partnership between Scott Barlow (23) and Luke Bess saw the total to 213 when Barlow departed.

Shortly after the rain arrived and washed play out with Luke Bess one short of a deserved half century and Dom Bess unbeaten on two.

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Closing on 213-7 with nine overs to play represented a good effort by the home batsmen in challenging conditions.

Sidmouth banked ten points from the rained-off game and that was actually one more than the other two title hopefuls Bovey Tracey, beaten by North Devon and Exmouth, who were at Budleigh with the hosts 137-6 after 29 overs when rain washed out play, banked from their respective matches.

With five games to play Bovey Tracey and Exmouth share top spot with 207 points with Sidmouth 16 behind.

A look at the run-in for all three title challengers shows Sidmouth with the tougher schedule.

Will Murray’s side must travel to North Devon, host Exeter and Plymouth before visiting Bovey Tracey and finishing with Budleigh at home.

Bovey Tracey go to Torquay tomorrow, then host Budleigh, visit Exmouth, entertain Sidmouth and finally visit relegation-threatened Bradninch.

Exmouth host Exeter this weekend then visit Plymouth, entertain Bovey and host North Devon before ending the campaign at Cornwood on August 31.

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