Cheddar CC firsts and second fall to opening day defeats

Liam Jones bowling for Cheddar.

Liam Jones bowling for Cheddar. - Credit: Mark Atherton

Cheddar were defeated by Crewkerne at Sharpham Road in their opening fixture of the Somerset League Division Two season on Saturday.

Hoping to get off to a good start the hosts chose to bat only to lose Ryan Llewelyn and James Houghton in quick succession in the first five overs.

Scott Harris and Will Creaser then looked to have set a base for Cheddar to post a good score before Harris holed out to deep square leg for 34. 

Cheddar continuously lost wickets and at one stage the game looked all but lost, but stern resistance from Liam Jones (30), assisted by Jimmy and Terry Clark down the order, they got to a defendable, but low, total of 130.

The bowlers gave them hope as Clark got the early breakthrough with Jones keeping runs to a minimum at the other end, but the low total meant Crewkerne could grind their way to victory in the 35th over.

Cheddar go to Ilton on Saturday looking to get back on track. 

The seconds fell to defeat at Weston fourths in the battle of two promoted sides.

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Having won the toss and elected to bat, Weston introduced Dave Gooch (4-34) into the attack had an immediate impact as he took two wickets in his first over.  

With the score on 73-4 after 20 overs Cheddar hoped to restrict Weston to a score of around 150, but the experienced batting line-up kept their heads and accumulated well.

However, Weston’s batting strength enabled them to accelerate in the final few overs to finish on 186 after 40 overs. 

Cheddar openers Gareth Humberstone (10) and Isaac McLaren (31) made a solid start in reply, before Jamie Dance removed Humberstone in the ninth over with the score on 19. 

Rob Hathway and Isaac McLaren built a good partnership, taking advantage of some loose bowling and finding the boundary on a regular basis. 

The visitors looked handily placed with the score on 84 after 23 overs but two quick wickets changed the picture as Cheddar looked to rebuild again.  

When McLaren, who anchored the innings well and showed maturity beyond his years, was eventually dismissed with 10 overs remaining, it was left to Gooch (37) to try and see Cheddar across the line by shepherding the tail.

Despite a few lofty blows, the required run rate was increasing and Weston brought Dance back into the attack which proved decisive as he picked up a flurry of wickets to finish with 6-14.  

Dave and Conrad Peake chipped in with eight runs apiece but when Gooch fell it effectively ended Cheddar’s hopes as they finished 16 runs short.