Diss title tilt on course
A superb all-round team performance to beat Beccles by six wickets kept Diss' Norfolk Alliance Division One title ambitions alive.They are now just five points off second-placed Sprowston who they visit this Saturday.
A superb all-round team performance to beat Beccles by six wickets kept Diss' Norfolk Alliance Division One title ambitions alive.
They are now just five points off second-placed Sprowston who they visit this Saturday.
A titanic effort from the ground staff meant that the game was able to get under way an hour late, with both sides agreeing to a 35-over match.
Bottom side Beccles won the toss and surprisingly decided to bat on a damp pitch. Superb bowling up front from both Chris Germon and Henry Rush, who looks to have recaptured last season's fine form, meant that Beccles were on the back foot early on.
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It was Rush who picked up a wicket in his third over, clean bowling Sydenham for two. A mini-partnership between Australian Vihm and Patnell saw Beccles move on to 40 before the introduction of spin king Chris Cooper.
He was soon amongst the wickets, bowling Patnell for 19. Then Vihm found himself run out by Simon Cooper whilst jumping over the incoming throw. Brother Chris then bagged a simple caught and bowled after young Porter dollied the ball back to him for seven. R Turrell only lasted a matter of minutes before Chris Cooper bowled him for seven, leaving Beccles struggling at 59-5.
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Gaswell made a huge error when challenging skipper David Tooke's bullet-like arm from the boundary as Tooke lasered a ball in over the stumps for Green to take off the bails, leaving the batsman run out half way down the track.
Beccles' only resistance came in the form of a desperate show of risky shots and big hitting from D Turrell, who rode his luck on his way to his 50. Chris Cooper picked up his fourth wicket with the help of a good catch at full stretch from Mark Williamson.
Both openers came back on and it was Chris Germon who picked up two wickets, cleverly bowling D Turrell on 54, and Youngs followed in the same fashion for just three.
Diss wrapped up the innings when Ben Green fielded a ball and this time turned provider to Dave Tooke by tossing a catch on the run to his skipper for him to run out Barber for 0.
Chasing 136 for victory, Diss opened up with Henry Rush and Liam Brown. It was overseas bowler Vihm who put Diss under pressure early on, trapping Liam Brown lbw for two. The prize scalp of in-form batsman James Wilby went to the other opener Turrell, when Wilby was adjudged lbw for one.
Rush and Chris Cooper set about mounting an attack on the Beccles total with Chris hitting his first three scoring shots for fours. Just as the partnership began to get into full swing, Rush was caught for 16 off Vihm's bowling.
Under-pressure batsman Will Dawson bounded out to the middle to a barrage of sledging from the Beccles players. He proved his class with his bat and hit back at his critics with his best performance since Mattishall away last season. Both he and Cooper slaughtered any wayward bowling.
Cooper hit two big sixes on his way to a spectacular and vital 50, before eventually falling to a loose shot, being caught for 63. Will Dawson and Simon Cooper saw Diss home with Dawson on an impressive 35 not out.
This victory leaves Beccles well adrift at the foot of the table, with Diss, nearly at the mid-way point of the season, hot on the heels of those teams above them.
Martin Hobson man of the match: Chris Cooper, 63 runs, and 4-11.