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Copdock & OI draw, while Mildenhall are frustrated by last-wicket pair

PUBLISHED: 12:47 17 July 2017 | UPDATED: 16:13 17 July 2017

Martyn Cull, who scored a fine 123 not out in Copdock & OI's draw against Great Witchingham.

Martyn Cull, who scored a fine 123 not out in Copdock & OI's draw against Great Witchingham.

James Ager

Suffolk sides Copdock & Old Ipswichian, and Mildenhall, both had to settle for draws in their respective East Anglian Premier League matches at home to Great Witchingham and Norwich respectively on Saturday.

As is the normal procedure at Copdock, home captain Tom Rash chose to insert the opposition after winning the toss, hoping to chase down a known target.

However, third-placed Great Witchingham batted superbly to reach 328 for three, off 64 overs, and that proved beyond Copdock, who finished by batting out for a draw on 242 for eight (off 69 overs), despite an excellent century from Martyn Cull.

On another excellent batting strip, James Spelman (36) and captain Sam Arthurton (97) put on 80 for the first wicket, with Arhurton then adding a further 100 with James Hale for the second wicket. Hale ended unbeaten on 105, off 120 balls.

The visitors were pegged back to 197 for three, at one stage, but the hard-hitting Luke Schlemmer then smashed 75 not out off just 49 deliveries, including five sixes and four fours, in an unbroken partnership of 131 for the fourth wicket. And that effectively took the game out of Copdock’s reach.

Suffolk county openers Cull and Jaik Mickleburgh put on a quickfire 65 for the first wicket, but once Mickleburgh was caught by Michael Jones off Schlemmer for a run-a-ball 43, the home side were left playing second fiddle.

Cull was left 123 not out at the close, striking 19 boundaries in his 198-ball stay, while there were useful knocks by Andy Northcote (25), Donald Mlambo (12) and Stephen Croft (16). Harry Bailey was with Cull at the end.

Meanwhile, Mildenhall were frustrated by an unbeaten last wicket stand of 68 between No. 10 Jason Blake (44no) and No. 11 Dominic Mirner (26no) in a draw against Norwich at Wamil Way.

Ben Shepperson (71) and Matt Allen (46) were the chief run-getters for the hosts, putting on 57 for the fifth wicket on the way to a final total of 212 for eight. All the top seven batsmen reached double figures.

South African Tyron Koen (18-1-44-4) and veteran spinner Murtaza Hussain (18-6-31-4) reduced Norwich to a desperate 108 for nine, leaving Mildenhall on the brink of what would have been a seventh win of the season.

But Blake and Mirner refused to budge, seeing out the final overs as Norwich finished on 176 for nine off 59 overs, 37 runs adrift of victory.

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