Michael Comber spearheads attack as victory is within Suffolk’s grasp

Michael Comber, who took seven for 59 in the first innings and then took two early wickets in the se

Michael Comber, who took seven for 59 in the first innings and then took two early wickets in the second innings. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT - Credit: Archant

Suffolk are within sight of an innings victory after continuing to completely dominate their Unicorns Minor Counties Championship match away at Northumberland, following day two of three at South Northumberland today.

Their hosts still trail by 45 runs, with just two second innings wickets in tact, and so are facing up to prospect of an innings defeat.

Michael Comber was the star of the star of the show today, taking seven wickets in the first innings and then two of the first three wickets to fall in the second innings.

Suffolk had been in a very strong position at the end of day one, thanks to former Essex opener Jaik Mickleburgh’s superb 218 not out. Mickleburgh had put on 147 for the first wicket with Martyn Cull (63), and Tom Rash had added an unbeaten 51 late in the innings to leave Suffolk declaring on 424 for five.

Northumberland slumped to 65 for five at stumps on Sunday evening, undone by Comber’s four for 28 off 10 overs, to leave them 359 runs adrift with five first innings wickets in hand.

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And it didn’t get any better for the home side this morning, with former Essex bowler Comber adding three more wickets to claim outstanding figures of 21-6-59-7. Alexander Simpson was the only batsman to offer any real resistance, and he was left high-and-dry on 44 not out as his Northumberland side were bowled out for just 152 in the 58th over.

Jake Wakelin and Tom Rash removed the final two batsmen, Simpson adding 33 for the last wicket with Ben Quirk before the No.11 was caught by wicketkeeper Adam Mansfield, off Rash.

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Following on, it was the same old story as Northumberland were quickly reduced to 16 for three.

James Poulson bowled Jack Jessop (2), while an inspired Comber, the Frinton all-rounder and former Bury St Edmunds captain, trapped James Thompson lbw and had Tom Hewison caught by Poulson for a duck.

Opener Matthew Whaley, however, was still at the crease at the close, with an unbeaten 92 accrued off 262 deliveries. His patient knock was the reason why Suffolk were not celebrating a victory inside two days.

Ben Reece took two for 34 off 11 overs, including the wicket of Bradley Yates (32) to end a stand of 62 with Whaley for the fifth wicket.

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