Youthful Otters too strong for Lewdown

Exmouth cricket. Ref exsp 32-16TI 5945. Picture: Terry Ife

Exmouth cricket. Ref exsp 32-16TI 5945. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Ottery 2nd XI continued their climb up the A Division ladder with a deserved 72-run victory over Lewdown, writes Alex Clements.

The youngest 2nd XI team in recent memory racked up an impressive score which proved far too much for the home team to handle, despite a below par fielding performance.

Upon losing the toss, the visiting Otters were asked to have first use of a slightly soft, albeit flat track. Dan Jeacock (17) and Joe Henkus started cautiously, putting away any loose deliveries. They compiled a useful stand of 55 before Jeacock was dismissed leg before to first change bowler Adrian Edmonds.

This brought captain Alex Clements to the wicket, who with Henkus piled on the runs in a partnership of 76. The latter looked to be finding his stride despatching a series of fine drives through the covers. The introduction of left arm spinner Adrian Clements brought his demise, as he tamely walked past his first ball and was stumped for 66.

There was no respite for the home team though, as Harry Conway entered and played an excellent supporting innings. Along with the captain, they added 59 in quick time with a mixture of good running and aggressive strokeplay.

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The Ottery captain reaching his half century, but perished next ball as he picked out deep mid wicket for exactly 50. At 190-3, the innings was set for a late onslaught. Despite losing Alex Tubbs (1), Conway for an excellent 36 and George Mutter (9), all of them caught off the spin of Clements, Joe Birch provided the late impetus.

The oldest player at 24 years old, he hit two massive straight maximums to race to 43 not out off just 23 deliveries to end the innings on a very imposing 260-7.

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Despite a strong opening spell from Joe Birch, the Lewdown response started strongly. Openers Ollie Brown and Phil Yeo raced to 60-0 within 10 overs. It took the introduction of George Southall Brown to break the partnership. With his first delivery he pinned Yeo (18) leg before and forced a loose drive from Adrian Clements into the willing hands of Conway at cover.

At 68-2, the hosts found their way back into the game through a series of dropped catches and poor ground fielding as Brown and Adam Creasey took the score to 114-2 with 25 overs remaining. Another bowling change brought the wicket required as Dan Jeacock bowled Creasey (21) with a beautifully flighted delivery. He then accounted for Charlie Hughes (6) who was well held by brother Tom Jeacock. However, the big wicket came when Brown went to pull a ball from George Mutter that hit his thigh pad, which then trickled onto the stumps to be dismissed for 73.

Adam Wonnacott then recklessly took on Dan Jeacock’s arm and was run out by half the pitch, Gary Wingrove was deceived by a Jeacock delivery to be bowled, giving the Colyton student impressive figures of 3-18 off his 6 overs.

Joe Birch returned to clean up Jim Cole for a duck and Jack Webber was too quick for opposition captain Steve Metherell, bowling him for 8. The last pair of Mark Wilkins and Adrian Edmonds held Ottery at bay as more chances went down, it took a great catch from young keeper Eddie Rudolph to give Webber his second wicket and Ottery the win by 72 runs.

An important victory which keeps them in mid table, but Ottery will know their fielding will need to improve before next week’s must win game against bottom side Ipplepen.

Ottery 260-7 (J Henkus 66, Alex Clements 50, J Birch 43*, H Conway 36, Adrian Clements 5-66) Lewdown 188 (O Brown 73, A Creasey 21, D Jeacock 3-18, G Southall Brown 2-20, J Webber 2-35) Ottery (20pts) beat Lewdown (7pts) by 72 runs.

Man of the Match: Joe Birch

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