Copdock look to keep up pressure

CRICKET: Copdock and Old Ipswichian could move closer to becoming an East Anglian Premier League side tomorrow if they beat in-form Wivenhoe.Copdock are still in contention to win the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Division One title after leaders Tattingstone lost their last two matches.

CRICKET

COPDOCK and Old Ipswichian could move closer to becoming an East Anglian Premier League side tomorrow if they beat in-form Wivenhoe.

Copdock are still in contention to win the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Division One title after leaders Tattingstone lost their last two matches.

Tattingstone appeared to be running away with the league but successive defeats against Sudbury and last week at Wivenhoe has given the chasing pack some hope.


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If Tattingstone win the league they could not go into the EAPL as their facilities do not meet the required standard. It means the team finishing second could, for the first time since the restructuring of the league in 1999, win promotion.

At the end of the season the winners or runners up from the Two Counties Championship would be involved in a play-off with a team from the Cambridgeshire League and one from the Norfolk Alliance.

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However, it is believed that the top sides of the Cambridgeshire League do not wish to go into the EAPL.

This would make it a straight one-off match between the Two Counties representative and a Norfolk Alliance team.

The winner of this would face the side who finished bottom of the East Anglian Premier League with the victors of the tie playing in that division next year.

Wivenhoe still have an outside chance of making the top two after a run of five wins in six games, but with five defeats already, their promotion push might have come a bit too late.

Copdock have made their intentions to play in the EAPL clear and moved above Sudbury last Saturday when they defeated them to go into second place.

In an impressive performance they easily reached their target thanks to contributions from Tim Percival, Tristan Jervis and John East. But the real star of the game was bowler John Bell who took incredible figures of eight for 82.

Tattingstone have this week been celebrating their cricket festival with matches on the last three days.

They played a Gentlemen Of York side on Tuesday, a Neal Manning XI on Wednesday and staged a Medite Seniors against Osborne Seniors match yesterday.

A victory on Saturday would end their celebrations in the best way and would also take them closer to their first Division One title.

Tattingstone will be looking to regain their early season form when they entertain a Halstead side who are in danger of being relegated for the second consecutive year.

Browns are another team in danger of the drop but will have to be at their best to beat third placed Sudbury. It has been an inconsistent season for Browns and they will be missing key batsman Matt Perry (holiday) while Ed Flather will again be absent as he is also away.

Flather has been out for over a month and Browns are hoping he will be fit for selection next week after he broke a thumb against Bury seconds in mid June.

Ipswich and East Suffolk will be hoping to see some rare action when they are scheduled to play in what will be only their eighth championship game of the season.

I.E.S have had three games declared void and the withdrawal of Felixstowe has caused two further blank weekends in a frustrating season for the players at Chantry Park.

However, they sit top of the table and are in a great position to make an immediate return to the higher division after suffering relegation last year.

One of the key factors for them being top has been the form of Mark Smith who has taken an incredible 23 wickets at an average of 11.7. Smith picked up seven wickets in their last match against Elmstead Grasshoppers for his third five-wicket haul of the season.

No I.E.S. batsman has scored over 69 runs in one innings but they have not had to due to the impressive form from Smith and team-mate Chris Norton (ten wickets at an average of 15.6).

They play struggling Lakenheath on Saturday and they beat them by five wickets in the first meeting of the season between the sides back in May.

Two local sides could win promotion from Division Two as Easton are only two places behind I.E.S.

They need to keep the pressure on second placed Coggeshall and are at home to Mildenhall seconds.

After a reasonable start St Margaret's have slipped down the Division Three table and in a very tight league need to gain some points to stay clear of relegation.

Woolpit are second and could go top if they beat Halstead seconds (who are bottom) and Harwich and Dovercourt slip up against Boxted.

Achilles will be hoping to stay top of Division Four as they travel to Stowmarket and East Bergholt, currently in second, face Eight Ash Green.

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