Pacesetting Woolpit cling on to top spot

PUBLISHED: 14:53 02 August 2001 | UPDATED: 15:16 03 March 2010

CRICKET: LEADERS of the Suffolk Premier League, Woolpit, suffered only their second defeat of the season at the weekend when they came unstuck against Eye.

LEADERS of the Suffolk Premier League, Woolpit, suffered only their second defeat of the season at the weekend when they came unstuck against Eye.

They remain in top-spot despite second-placed Woodbridge's victory over Exning which closes the gap and sets up an exciting title chase as both clubs reached the halfway point of their season.

Eye won the toss and elected to bat on a good wicket, and after an early setback they made steady progress against some tight Woolpit bowling.

Whiting, who struck a half century, was well supported by Robinson (27) and a late flourish by Adrian Starling and Perrett set a total of 197 for 7.

The Woolpit innings got off to a very slow start with Martin Eeles falling to a smart catch, but Tim Parker and Rich King managed to keep the runs ticking over.

Parker was finally out for 70 and the regular loss of wickets made progress difficult for the hosts.

They lost their final wicket with 152 on the board, falling 44 runs short of victory.

Woodbridge and Old Woodbridgians kept up the pressure on the leaders with a three-wicket win at home to Exning.

The West Suffolk side, who are struggling near the foot of the table, batted first and posted a competitive total following a careful opening partnership of 85 between Simon Lawson (39) and Neil Turner (42).

Exning failed to build on that solid base until an unbeaten sixth-wicket partnership of 62 between Kevin Pallant (44no) and Steve Game (28no) took the total to 205 for 5.

Woodbridge's Barry Spall (34) and Andy Barham (31) batted sensibly to take them past three figures, but aided by two run-outs the home team slumped to 139 for 6.

However, David Scales kept his head to keep a steady supply of boundaries going, and won the match with a sweetly-struck four to bring up his half century and victory for his team by three wickets.

In the Intermediate Division the top two both won again but in contrasting ways.

Thurston scored an impressive 216-run victory when they travelled to Martlesham, whereas Nowton kept their nerve to secure a five-run win over Elveden.

Having scored an impressive 258 for 4 – N Baker 91, R Baker 67, J Smethens 42no – Thurston then blitzed Martlesham for just 42.

Only one batsman reached double figures as the home side collapsed without a fight to extend the visitors' 100% record.

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