Gallery: Frinton cricket club claim last-over win over Woolpit to move up to second spot
- Credit: Su Anderson
Frinton, the surprise package of this season, moved up to the heady heights of second in the Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League, thanks to a last over victory against relegation-troubled Woolpit on Saturday.
Impressive Frinton chalked up their eighth win of the season, but only their second batting first, by 59 runs at Rectory Lane.
As a result, Mark Jones’ side are now up to second place, in their first-ever season at this level following their promotion last year.
They are 37 points behind pace-setters Swardeston, but must be confident of finishing in the top three, with just three fixtures remaining.
By contrast, Woolpit have been slipping down the table in recent weeks, after actually sitting in top spot after seven games of the campaign.
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The West Suffolk club, ravaged by injuries and absentees, are now just two points ahead of bottom club Saffron Walden, who currently sit in the relegation spot.
Woolpit skipper, Andy Northcote, won the toss and decided to field, but his out-of-form team were soon on the back foot as Frinton’s top five batsmen all got among the runs.
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Michael Griggs (26) and Trevor Moulton (32) put on 67 for the first wicket, before Matt Foakes (24), Mervyn Westfield (41) and Kyran Young (49) carried on the momentum.
Gihan Dilruk added a quickfire 30 not out, off 25 deliveries, with skipper Jones (16no) for support, as Frinton were able to declare on 257 for eight, after 61 overs.
That gave the Essex visitors a minimum of 59 overs to bowl out Woolpit, although the fact that they managed to bowl their overs quickly enabled them to have a total of 61. And it was in the last permitted over that they secured victory.
Skipper Andy Northcote (59) and South African all-rounder Michael Rippon (63) shared a 92-run stand for the third wicket, to take the score on to 112, but as soon as Northcote was dismissed, the hosts collapsed.
Westfield, Dan Carter, David Brent and Dilruk all took two wickets, and it was Sri Lankan spinner Dilruk who claimed the vital last wicket of Barry Collins, trapped leg before on the second ball of the last over, to end Woolpit’s resistance.
Frinton skipper Jones explained: “It was a good game. We had not won our last couple of fixtures, and in truth we should really have scored more than 300 runs in our innings.
“People got themselves in, and then got out, but I was able to make a generous declaration after 61 overs, realising that if we bowled well, we could win the game.
“All the bowlers chipped in, especially the two younger lads, Dan Carter and David Brent, but it all came down to the last over. It was very tight.
“It was a risky declaration, but we wanted to win the game. It was a calculated gamble, and that’s a position we have not been in much this year, because often we have not batted well enough. But we are now up to second in the table, and we play bottom club Saffron Walden next Saturday.
“We are aiming for a top-three finish. I think Swardeston will still win the league, but I’d like to think we could win a couple of our last three matches, and finish highest of the teams from the Two Counties (Championship).
“We will keep plugging away,” added Jones.
Meanwhile, Copdock & Old Ipswichian recorded a comfortable six-wicket win at Horsford, who were bowled out for 186. Matt Wareing took two early wickets, on his way to figures of three for 38, while spinner Chris Swallow took four for 44.
Copdock eased home inside 50 overs, thanks chiefly to Martyn Cull (58), Jed Cawkwell (48) and opener Sam Webb-Snowling (46).