Suffolk turn it around to win

SUFFOLK completed a remarkable turnaround to defeat Cambridgeshire by 50 runs yesterday in their Minor Counties Championship match at Bury St Edmunds.

The home team, who were reduced to 46 for seven in their first innings on the opening day, showed great character to fight back and emerge victorious, collecting 20 points in the process.

The match was evenly poised going into the third and final day at the Victory Ground, which saw Tom Rash deputise as 12th man for injured Suffolk debutant Chris Lomas, who was nursing two fingers damaged attempting to take a catch on the first day.

The odds started to swing Cambridgeshire’s way yesterday morning as the visitors, resuming on 10 for no wicket and requiring another 203 for victory, chipped away at their target.

They had progressed to 56, before the loss of four wickets for 13 runs in the space of 53 deliveries opened the door to Suffolk’s success.

Off-spinner James Finch, who bowled with good control, started the rot in the 22nd over as Tom Harvey was caught at long on by Ben France.

Martyn Cull took three catches at short leg, the first off the last ball of stand-in skipper Tom Huggins’ opening over of off-spin to remove Matt Pateman, who clearly indicated the ball struck him on the elbow as he walked off.

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Tony Palladino, who had helped bowl Suffolk back into the match on day one and scored useful runs on the second day, was again to the fore yesterday, leaping goalkeeper-like to clutch onto a drive above his head at mid-on to account for Connor Cunningham.

The Cull-Huggins combination then struck again twice before lunch, including ending opener Alan Burton’s 87-ball stay, which left Cambridgeshire wobbling at 104 for five at the break.

Much then depended on ex-Yorkshire opener Simon Kellett, so when Palladino produced a beauty first ball after the interval the writing was on the wall.

Palladino then struck twice in four balls before Huggins repeated his trick of taking a wicket in the first over when he returned for a second spell, the debut-making Mark Nunn clinging onto a catch at deep mid-wicket against his former county.

Wicket-keeper Chris Warn claimed his eighth victim of the match off James Cowan’s attempted cut to give Huggins his five-wicket haul and Suffolk a hard-earned victory.