Seconds consolidate top spot

UPHILL Castle Seconds visited Westland Sports looking to consolidate their position at the top of the 2nd Division of the 2nd XI competition.

UPHILL Castle Seconds visited Westland Sports looking to consolidate their position at the top of the 2nd Division of the 2nd XI competition.

On an excellent batting wicket, Uphill were asked to field first and achieved the breakthrough in the eighth over when George Cox removed both openers in the over to reduce the home side to 20-2.

Westlands rallied briefly to 53 in the 16th over when Matt Humphries struck twice in two balls, thanks to good catches from Chris Disney and George Kimmins. Shortly afterwards, Humphries (12-2-50-3) struck again to leave the home side struggling at 69-5 after 18 overs. Uphill's advantage was pressed home further when Pete Jobling (9-2-27-1) took the sixth wicket to leave the home side 88-6 at the halfway stage.

Uphill were then frustrated by a seventh wicket partnership of 56 between Fox and Reeves. However, the re-introduction of Cox resulted in the dismissal both Fox and Reeves, thanks to smart catches from Disney and Winn. From this point, Uphill wrapped up the Westland innings quickly as Tom Oultram (2-0-11-1) and Cox bowled the last two batsmen to leave Westlands 163 all out in the 42nd over as Cox finished with superb figures of 11.1-0-44-5.

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On such a good wicket, Uphill were confident of chasing down their target. However, the in-form openers Winn (11) and Hodder (2) were both dismissed in the first seven overs to leave Uphill 19- 2.

The innings was initially rebuilt by Rob Owen and Disney with a third wicket partnership of 41 which was ended in the 17th over when Owen was caught for 14 as Uphill found themselves 60-3.

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This brought Craig Grabham to the wicket and with the impenetrable Disney at the other end, Uphill started to stamp their authority on the game.

Both Grabham and Disney posted their 50s in an excellent fourth wicket partnership of 103, which ended with only one to win when Grabham was bowled for 63. It was therefore left to Disney to strike the winning runs to finish on 58 not out and guide Uphill to a six wicket victory and a maximum 35 league points, thus ensuring Uphill maintain top spot in the division.

Special mention should be made of the efforts of Disney and Grabham, but the Forte Financial man of the match was awarded to George Cox for his excellent bowling performance.

Uphill Castle 3rds dodged the raindrops to face East Huntspill on Saturday.

Uphill won the toss and elected to field on a rain affected wicket. Great catches by Kuht and Doyle coupled with excellent bowling by Moore (8-0-46-5), Leech (5-2-20-1), DJ Doyle (5-1-19-2) and Carrow (2.4-0-18-2), ensured that Huntspill's attack could not gain any foothold.

Top scorer Thomas offered the only real threat, but once he was out for 34 the innings collapsed and his team were all out for 104.

Uphill's reply was unusually tentative, mostly due to an unreliable bounce and some superb bowling, particularly from Spellman (12-7-13-3). Opener Kuht (46 not out) did well to steady the ship whilst those around him fell. It wasn't until Doyle (24) came to the crease at seven and Castle reached the target, completing their fifth victory.

Man of the match goes to Alvez Moore for his bowling.

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