Blackledge dazzles with bat and ball as Mildenhall thrash Burwell & Exning

Mildenhall captain, Tom Rash, who took two early wickets after scoring 64 with the bat in the big wi

Mildenhall captain, Tom Rash, who took two early wickets after scoring 64 with the bat in the big win over Burwell & Exning. Picture: NICK GARNHAM - Credit: Archant

Tristan Blackledge starred with both bat and ball as Mildenhall thrashed Burwell & Exning by a massive 171 runs in the Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League at Wamil Way on Saturday.

Blackledge, promoted to open the innings, top-scored with 97 as Mildenhall rattled up an impressive 279 for three off their 50 overs.

The all-rounder then obliged with some superb bowling, returning figures of 8.5-2-27-5 as Burwell were skittled out for a mere 108 in 33.5 overs.

Starting the day in third spot, 20 points behind second-placed Swardeston and 60 points behind pace-setters Sudbury, Mildenhall remain in that position with all the top three winning on Saturday.

Mildenhall captain, Tom Rash, actually lost the toss, but he can have no complaints with his opposite number from Burwell, Joseph Tetley, electing to field first.

Instead, Rash and Blackledge proceeded to share an opening partnership of 122 to set the trend for the early part of the day.

Suffolk county all-rounder Rash struck 64 off 78 balls before he was run out by Tim Catley, and although Nick Maiolo (9) fell cheaply to leave the hosts on 133 for two, that was the extent of the visitors’ joy as Blackledge and James Stamatis piled on the pressure and the runs.

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The duo put on 139 for the third wicket, Blackledge powering to within three of his century with the balls running out, when he was bowled by Jay Ghelani for a 144-ball 97, which featured 10 boundaries.

Ex-Mistley batsman Stamatis finished unbeaten on 77, accrued off 66 balls and highlighted by three big sixes.

Any hopes that Burwell may have had of mounting a strong run-chase were quickly quashed as Rash dismissed both openers, Simon Donald (first-ball duck) and Tom Griffiths (4) early on.

Andrew Bramley (40) and skipper Tetley (27) did take the total up to 70, but the visitors then lost their last eight wickets for the addition of just 38 runs.

Blackledge bowled Tetley to break up the partnership on his way to a five-wicket haul.

Veteran spinner, Murtaza Hussain, claimed the all-important wicket of Bramley, who was fifth out with the total on 80, caught by Stamatis. In addition to Blackledge, there were eye-catching figures for Rash (5-2-16-2, Hussain (4-1-8-1) and Maiolo (5-1-8-2).

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