Sudbury stay bottom after losing thriller to Granta

POSITIVE PLAY: Nathan Poole's 31 was in vain as Sudbury slipped to defeat against Cambridge Granta
POSITIVE PLAY: Nathan Poole's 31 was in vain as Sudbury slipped to defeat against Cambridge Granta

GIBBS DENLEY

EAST ANGLIAN

PREMIER LEAGUE

Sudbury 235 lost to

Cambridge Granta 236-9

by one wicket

A much-improved Sudbury were just short of gaining the victory that would have lifted them off the bottom of the East Anglian Premier League.

After posting 235 – thanks to a series of decent scores by their batsmen – the match went down to the final over with Sudbury needing just one more wicket to win.

However – after Darren Batch agonisingly dropped a catch that would have won the Talbots the match – it was Cambridge Granta who scored the five runs they required to earn success at Friars Street.

Put into bat, Sudbury made a solid start after Jay Phillips was dropped in slips on his first ball and went on to make 44.

Nathan Poole was at the other end and made 31, playing positively before being bowled.

Ben Reece, who is in form after his Premier League maiden ton a few weeks ago, made 40 and skipper Batch also contributed 39.

A few quick wickets stemmed the flow of runs, but a quick-fire 36 from 26 balls by Steve Witham helped Sudbury total 236 from 65 overs.

The second innings started well for Sudbury after Jandre Coetzee took the wicket of Arthur Sewell for 10.

Granta took a while to get going and looked out of the chase until 15-year-old Middlesex player Max Holden started building his innings.

He finished with a magnificent 116 before being caught and bowled by Coetzee.

His innings gave Granta the momentum to begin to chase the final 110 needed off 17 overs with eight wickets in hand.

Wickets fell at regular intervals while runs were also scored at the required rate.

Coetzee (4-53) and Simmons (4-51) were the pick of the bowlers, but the climax of the game came with Granta needing five off the last over while Sudbury needed one more wicket to secure victory.

To add to Sudbury’s woes, the hard-hitting Fred Fairhead was dropped by skipper Batch on the first ball of the final over, whose effort to run in from the long on boundary was in vain as he fumbled the catch.

The winning runs were hit with three balls to spare and Granta’s jubilations were met with a stunned silence from the opposition and their crowd.

Sudbury will be downbeat after missing out on 20 points, but will take many positives into their crucial game against Horsford on Saturday (11am).

n Sudbury’s James Poulson, Nathan Poole and Adam Mansfield have all been selected for the senior Suffolk side in their Eastern Division Minor Counties Championship match at Cumberland starting on Sunday.

Poulson and Poole helped Suffolk Under-19s defeat their counterparts from Cambridgeshire in he East of England Cricket Development Competition.

Poulson hit 27 and Poole 20 and the former went on to record bowling figures of 3-42.

n Sudbury are hosting the two-day England Cricket Board Under-17s County Championship match between Suffolk and Scotland today and tomorrow (11am).