Valente stars as Copdock & OI defeat champions Sudbury

Cameron Valente, bowling, who scored 78 not out and took two early wickets in Copdock's 11-run win o

Cameron Valente, bowling, who scored 78 not out and took two early wickets in Copdock's 11-run win over Sudbury. Picture: NICK GARNHAM - Credit: Archant

COPDOCK & OLD IPSWICHIAN beat defending champions Sudbury by 11 runs in an entertaining Suffolk derby in the Read Brothers Ltd East Anglian Premier League on Saturday.

Alex Oxley, who put on 66 for the first wicket with Ben Claydon in Copdock's win over Sudbury. Pictu

Alex Oxley, who put on 66 for the first wicket with Ben Claydon in Copdock's win over Sudbury. Picture: NICK GARNHAM - Credit: Archant

Copdock dented Sudbury's chances of completing a hat-trick of EAPL titles, leaving the Friars Street club in third spot, 21 points behind leaders Frinton, after serving up one of their best performances of the summer.

Openers Ben Claydon (42) and Alex Oxley) put on 66 for the first wicket, to give Copdock & OI a solid platform after skipper Chris Swallow had won the toss.

But the hosts then slumped to 107 for eight, losing those eight wickets for the addition of just 41 runs. Andrew Simmons did the main damage with four for 26 off his 10 overs.

However, Cameron Valente rescued the situation with a superb 78 not out at No. 5, hitting two sixes and nine fours in his 87-ball stay.

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Australian all-rounder Valente put on an undefeated 81 for the eighth wicket with wicketkeeper Jacob Marston, who hung around for 14 not out off 34 balls as Copdock & OI finished their 50 overs on 188 for eight.

Valente switched bat for ball to peg back Sudbury to 17 for two in their reply, dismissing both skipper Adam Mansfield (1) and club captain Darren Batch (4).

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From a problematic 46 for four, Sudbury rallied with a 78-run partnership between Martyn Cull (45) and Henry Shipley (47).

Yet the run-rate was quite slow (100 up in 31.3 overs), and Sudbury then lost their last six wickets for just 53 runs, in the chase for runs, undone by the bowling of Ben Claydon, who took four for 31 off 4.2 overs. Sudbury were bowled out for 177 with 10 balls of the match left unbowled.

"It was a weired game. The pitch nibbled a bit and took some spin, but it was not specifically tricky," said Copdock skipper Swallow.

"We lost a few wickets, due to a mixture of poor shots and some good bowling, but Cameron (Valente) batted beautifully for us. He weathered the storm and hit some good shots at the end. Jacob (Marston) was dropped early on, which was key because that would have exposed our No. 11.

"We felt that we had got a half-decent score (188), and so it proved. Cameron has bowled well for us all summer, without much luck, while Ben (Claydon) is a wicket-taking bowler.

"It was a good win, and our third in succession following the wins over Bury and Mildenhall.

"We're fifth and having a decent season, although having five matches called off or abandoned because of the rain hasn't helped out cause," added Swallow.

Leaders FRINTON-ON-SEA bounced back from suffering their first defeat of the season, at the hands of Sudbury last weekend, by hammering Saffron Walden by 132 runs at the Anglo American Playing Fields.

Frinton captain, Michael Comber, won the toss and not surprisingly opted to bat first, his side responding with a massive 329 for seven off their 50 overs.

After Michael Griggs (32) and Jaik Mickleburgh (17) had put on 45 for the first wicket, the pair of Adam Wheater and Ashley Watson then took over with a match-winning partnership of 201 for the fourth wicket.

Essex county cricketer Wheater struck 114 off 101 balls, with two sixes and 15 fours, reaching his century off 96 balls.

Ex-Norwich all-rounder Watson, like Wheater a new recruit over the summer, made 90 off 118 balls.

Their double-century partnership was reached off 190 balls, a terrific effort.

Saffron Walden were quickly reduced to 14 for two, and they continued to lose wickets at regular intervals despite 51 from opener Regis Chakabva.

Zimbabwean Chakabva was the seventh wicket to fall, one of Dulanjala Mendis' four scalps (10-3-21-4). There were two wickets for Comber and Watson as Saffron Walden were bowled out for 197.

BURY ST EDMUNDS suffered a heavy nine-wicket defeat at home to mid-table Great Witchingham, despite an excellent unbeaten century from opener Justin Broad, who batted the whole 50 overs.

Bury were hampered by a poor start which saw them slip to 67 for four with Max Whittaker, Hugh Stanton, Daniel Moriarty and Ben Seabrook all being dismissed for single-figure scores.

However, Broad remained at the crease to fashion a recovery, putting on 62 with skipper Sean Park (patient 24 off 54 balls) and then an unbroken stand of 89 with Ben Curran (36 not out).

Broad finished on 118 not out, striking 13 fours off 136 balls. The South African's century was off 118 deliveries as Bury ended their 50 overs on 218 for five.

Moriarty bowled Jack Boyle with the score on 38, but that was Bury's only success as Great Witchingham eased home with 6.4 overs in hand. Skipper Sam Athurton was 125 not out and James Hale was 62 not out.

Bury remain four points ahead of local rivals MILDENHALL, whose summer of under-achievement continued with a five-wicket defeat at home to Cambridge. Mildenhall skipper Tom Rash won the toss and elected to bat, and it was looking good for his side following an excellent opening stand of 144 between Danny Wilson (52) and Joe Reed (70).

However, both openers then fell in quick succession, and the middle order of Ben Shepperson, Harrison Clark-Burnham and Rash failed to linger long at the crease. Ankit Sharma did contribute 33 off 34 balls at No. 3, but Mildenhall didn't really cash in on that bright start, ending on 221 for eight off the 50 overs.

Still, Cambridge were quickly reduced to 24 for three in their reply. Tristan Blackledge made the initial breakthrough by bowling opener Kieren Mackenzie (8), and Rash dismissed danger-men Daminda Ranaweera and Michael Pepper to put the hosts in the driving seat.

However, the match was turned by a superb fourth-wicket stand of 149 between opener Douglas Rice (62) and Peter Younghusband (93), Cambridge eventually completing victory with five wickets and 4.4 overs in hand.

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