Sudbury make winning start to defence of East Anglian Premier League title with 10-wicket win over Cambridge
Sudbury (176) kicked off their East Anglian Premier League title defence in style on Saturday with an emphatic 10-wicket win against Cambridge (172-7) to take all 25 points.
Cambridge won the toss and elected to bat first on a good-looking early season pitch at Friars Street.
New-ball pairing Jonny Gallagher and Paddy Sadler kept things tight in the early stages, keeping the Cambridge batsmen to just three runs an over.
The breakthrough for the home side came with the introduction of James Poulson to the attack when he nipped one back to trap Douglas Rice LBW for just four.
Poulson struck again soon after clean bowling Michael Turner to reduce the away side to 40-2.
A solid third-wicket partnership between Kieren Mackenzie and Jonny Atkinson advanced Cambridge past the 100-run mark but scoring remained slow throughout the innings.
Ben Reece removed Mackenzie for 57 before Poulson took his third of the innings to get rid of Atkinson for 44.
Tom Huggins and New Zealand overseas professional Henry Shipley then took a week apiece before the innings stalled following the run out of Cambridge captain Lewys Hill. The innings closed on a below-par 172-7.
Boosted by the availability of opening batsman Huggins, Sudbury never looked in any trouble during their reply.
Huggins drove and pulled with authority throughout his entertaining 104 not out.
Partner and Sudbury captain Adam Mansfield provided excellent support for Huggins and weighed in with 65no himself as Sudbury cruised to their target with more than 20 overs to spare.
There will be stiffer tests to come for the two-time champions but the professionalism and authority with which they dispatched their opponents only bodes well for the season.
Saturday sees Sudbury make the long trip to Great Witchingham in Norfolk, who lost at Frinton-on-Sea.