Achilles move closer to promotion

CRICKET: Achilles took another step towards promotion with a narrow two-wicket victory against Hadleigh.Achilles, who play in Division Four of the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship, stayed top of their league and are now in a strong position to move into Division Three.

CRICKET

ACHILLES took another step towards promotion with a narrow two-wicket victory against Hadleigh.

Achilles, who play in Division Four of the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship, stayed top of their league and are now in a strong position to move into Division Three.

They batted first and appeared to be in trouble as they only reached 143 for eight. Clive Stafford scored 40 and captain Eddie Green made 21 before bowler Ian Knight's impressive spell of seven for 55 snatched the victory.


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East Bergholt remain Achilles' closest challengers and kept up the pressure with an easy nine wicket win against Wivenhoe seconds. Jamie Willsher took five wickets before Dougie Frame (93 not out) and John Barnett (79) secured the win.

In Division One Tattingstone will be getting nervous after they slumped to their second consecutive defeat.

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They remain top despite being crushed by 115 runs by a Wivenhoe side they would have expected to beat.

Adrian Stockton took six for 80 but Tattingstone never looked like reaching the 278 Wivenhoe had scored.

Copdock and Old Ipswichian moved into second place and above Sudbury after the two sides met on Saturday.

Copdock's John Bell took the best bowling figures of the weekend with eight for 82 and Copdock reached their target thanks to Tim Percival (62), Tristan Jervis (37) and John East (45 n.o.).

Copdock have now forced their way back into the title race after it had appeared Tattingstone would cruise to their first championship.

If Mildenhall are relegated from the East Anglian Premier League via the play-off system – they are currently one off the bottom – and Tattingstone do not win the league then three teams could go down.

Tattingstone have not got the required facilities to move into the higher league and it means Browns have six games left to climb out of the bottom three to be assured of staying in the division.

Browns wasted an ideal chance to do this when they were beaten by a Bury St Edmunds seconds side who had been below them in the table.

Browns have been inconsistent all season with too few players performing with the bat and Charlie Sadler's return of five wickets was their only highlight from a disappointing day at the Victory Ground where they were comfortably beaten by 95 runs.

Browns are now ninth and bottom placed Braintree were chasing a massive 314 from Halstead before the game had to be abandoned. The other game in this division was Exning against Mistley but this was also not completed due to the weather.

Ipswich and East Suffolk stay top of Division Two despite not playing again as they had been scheduled to play Felixstowe who pulled out of the league.

It means IES have only played seven matches in the league, four less than some other teams in the same division.

While their first team were not in action their seconds had a great weekend after defeating the top two sides in consecutive days. They beat Maldon seconds by 32 runs and followed that with a 149-run success against Cavendish.

These two sides remain well clear at the top of Division Five and Maldon seconds' defeat means only Elmstead seconds in Division Seven have a 100 per cent record.

Easton and St Margaret's could not complete their games due to the conditions while Woolpit suffered a set-back in their quest for promotion from Division Three.

They were defeated by Boxted but still remain comfortably ahead of third-placed Haverhill.

In the much-criticised Sunday Challenge, Browns' miserable weekend continued with a 59-run defeat against Division Two side Frinton.

Australian Brendan Meagher remains one of Browns' best players of the season but his three wickets and unbeaten 40 were not enough.

Two more sides in this competition were awarded a walk-over victory this weekend and surely this tournament has to be re-structured at the end of the season.

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