Bury St Edmunds celebrate first win of the season, over Vauxhall Mallards
- Credit: Archant
Bury St Edmunds, who have struggled to fend off relegation in recent seasons, gave themselves a big boost by claiming victory over Vauxhall Mallards in an East Anglian Premier League clash at The Victory Ground on Saturday.
Bury ran-out comfortable winners by a six-wicket margin, having chased down Mallards’ total of 217 for eight off the allotted 50 overs.
Sean Park’s men reached their target with 14 overs to spare, the ideal way to bounce back from a crushing opening day defeat to champions Sudbury from two weeks ago.
George Loyd was the chief destroyer, taking five for 32 off nine overs, including an opening burst of four wickets that reduced the visitors to 33 for four.
Opening bowler Loyd dismissed both openers Matthew Plater (1) and Troy Allan (6), before bowling danger-man Ben France (10) and then having Harry Barker (2) caught by Josh Cantrell.
Mallards recovered, thanks to a superb fifth wicket partnership of 152 between Oliver Stone (69) and Nicholas Smit (80), before both fell in quick succession to James McKinney and Park respectively.
Bury have often been hampered by losing early wickets, and that was again the case on Saturday as Tom Curran and Alistair Allchin were back in the pavilion with just one run on the board.
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However, the experienced duo of opener Luke Du Plooy (65 off 66 balls) and overseas star Murray Commins (69 off 71 balls) put on 138 for the third wicket to steer the Suffolk hosts towards victory.
Both men fell to Paul Bradshaw (figures of 10-2-35-4) in quick succession, but Park (40 not out) and Cantrell (32 not out) saw Bury home at the end of the 36th over.
“During the first half of last season we were all in the doldrums with sad faces, so it’s good to get that first win so early and to be smiling already this season,” enthused skipper Park.
“They put us into bat, which is probably what we would have done anyway. Their two pros, South African Nicholas Smit and Oliver Stone, on a contract with Warwickshire, did put us under pressure, but we never let them get away from us.
“We were in familiar territory, losing two early wickets, but both Murray (Commins) and Luke (Du Plooy) batted patiently. They didn’t go chasing balls, but still scored at a rate of a-run-a-ball, which meant that we had plenty of time to get the win.”