Sudbury (133-1) beat
by nine wickets
Sudbury’s Darren Batch hailed Saturday’s convincing nine-wicket home win over fourth-placed Frinton-on-Sea as their best performance of the season.
With just four matches to go at the start of the day, the Talbots took another step towards securing their first Premier League title in a game in which captain Tom Huggins was the undoubted star of the show.
The now retired Suffolk skipper laid the foundation for the victory with his four wickets for 23 runs from his 10 overs, leaving the Essex visitors in a spin as they could only reach 132 on a good batting track.
It was Huggins who then led his side to the target with a 70 not out, with Batch finishing on 40no, following the loss of Adam Mansfield for five, having been caught by Thomas Benn off the bowling of Kyran Young.
“Tom is obviously a class batsmen and showed it again on Saturday,” said club captain Batch.
“He stepped up when we needed him and I was more than happy to play the supporting role.”
He continued: “Given the opposition and the players they have got, with Young, (Mike) Comber and (Mervyn) Westfield, and the fact we lost to them earlier in the season, to beat them so convincingly definitely meant it was one of our best of the season.”
Batch praised the bowling, not for the first time, as being the key behind the victory.
“It followed a similar pattern to the previous weeks really,” he said. “We thought Copdock (eight-wicket away win the previous week) and Frinton were crunch games.
“We prepared well and performed well on the day.
“The bowlers set it up for us really.”
James Poulson set the tone for the afternoon by taking the opening wicket, of Michael Griggs, with the very first ball, Ben Parker taking the catch.
Apart from the Huggins show, there were also two-wicket hauls for Poulson (2-35 off 5.4 overs) and Dustin Melton (2-11 off 6.5 overs).
Batch said the side are targeting two wins from their next two games, when they travel to Mildenhall this weekend and bottom side Horsford — who beat the former by six wickets on Saturday — the following Saturday (both 11am) to ensure the final-day home game with second-placed Swardeston does not become a simple winner-takes-all contest.
“Hopefully Frinton will do us a favour this weekend and beat Swardeston,” he said. “But even if they do not, we are confident of winning the next two. And then it is all down to the last game and, with a 21-point lead, we will be well in the driving seat.”
Billy Moulton-Day’s hamstring injury will rule him out this weekend.