Captain Daniel Goff stuns Woolpit with century as Mistley notch a crushing win
Previously winless Mistley produced a major shock by thrashing early pace-setters Woolpit in Division One of the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship last Saturday.
Hosts Mistley had begun the day as the only side without a win, from their first three fixtures, but captain Daniel Goff responded with a massive innings of 146 as the Essex club romped to a stunning victory by 205 runs at New Road.
And despite their slow start to the season, Goff himself believes that his team could yet be title contenders, come the end of the summer.
“I think it’s going to be a very tight league this season, which means that teams will be beating each other,” explained Goff.
“It’s going to be very open, so although we have not had the best of starts, I’d like to think that we could still end up being one of the contenders.
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“We’ve got our first win of the season under our belts, and we should take great confidence from the nature of the win, against a club who were playing in the (East Anglian) Premier League only last year.
“We would now like to go on a good winning, perhaps winning our next six or seven matches,” added Goff.
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It was a sensational performance from Mistley, who ironically had been put into bat by Woolpit captain Will Parker.
The home side amassed a huge total of 342 for six, off their allotted 50 overs, recovering from a vulnerable position of 39 for two and progressing to 106 for three inside the first 15 overs – the second over of the day had included an amazing 15 wides.
But it was James Scott, the vice-captain, and Goff who turned the screw, sharing a fantastic partnership of 150 for the fourth wicket, although the visitors will rue dropping Scott in the slips from his very first ball.
Helped by some crisp cover drives, Scott soon brought up his first half-century in the league this summer, although he was denied a century by edging Kieran Cloud to wicketkeeper Anthony Barnes. Scott’s innings of 96 contained 13 boundaries.
Goff then took complete charge, moving from 87 past the 100-mark with four consecutive sixes. He was closing in on a 150-landmark when he was bowled in the final over by Will Parker for a sparkling 146. Goff’s knock spanned 102 balls and featured seven sixes and 15 fours.
Nathan Crudeli was the pick of Woolpit’s bowlers, with figures of three for 58 off 10 overs.
Faced with such a daunting total, Woolpit found runs hard to come by early on, due to some tight bowling from Tim Scott and James Stamatis, and it was the latter who made the breakthrough by having captain Parker caught and bowled off a bouncer for 22.
Relegated from the East Anglian Premier League at the end of last summer, Woolpit did advance to a promising 74 for one, but the run-rate had already mushroomed by then and a collapse soon followed.
The visitors lost six wickets for just 31 runs to be marooned on 105 for eight, Bruce Leeke taking five for 27 off his 10 overs, which were the off-spinner’s best figures for the first XI.
Phil Palmer’s 10 overs cost just 16 runs, as Woolpit were eventually bowled out for 137 in the 45th over to suffer their first defeat of the season, by a crushing margin.
Opener Jack Rowett was the chief run-scorer for Woolpit, compiling 67 before he was the ninth wicket to fall.
But the result could have been so different, if Goff and not Parker had won the toss at the start of the day.
“It was a very good toss to lose, because I was also going to elect to bowl first if I had won it,” admitted Goff.
“Last year, we had struggled to get the runs, so I never dreamt that we would get a score of 342, after losing the toss.
“James Scott batted really well, which allowed me to play my natural game, and it was a nice way to get my hundred with four successive sixes.
“Even though we had such a big score, I was aware that Woolpit had managed to score a total of 347 (in their win over Frinton 2nds) the previous weekend, so we had to be wary.
“In the end, we bowled very well as a team, led at the start by some tight bowling from Tim Scott (10-2-27-0),” added Goff.
Mistley, who only lost on the penulitmate ball at Hadleigh the previous weekend, will hope to build on this remarkable win, when they travel to Haverhill this Saturday.
Woolpit, meanwhile, will look to get back on track at home to second-placed Elmstead.