1st XI a point from safety after narrow defeat at North Devon
A 32-run defeat to North Devon leaves the Bradninch 1st XI a single point from safety and now very much part of what is a three-team battle to be the one side of the trio that ‘beats the drop’ – the other two sides are the teams promoted from the A Division at the end of last season, Sandford and Hatherleigh.
This latest defeat came in a game that had plenty of twists and turns and, on another day, Bradninch skipper Gary Chappell may have been able to celebrate a superb away success. However, a number of dropped catches and one particular ‘thorn-in-the-side’ overseas player, did for the team at Instow.
Adrian Isherwood scored a magnificent century when North Devon won the fixture earlier in the Premier Division campaign at Kensham Park, and he repeated the process, this time scoring an unbeaten 110 as he helped North Devon recover from a ‘troubled’ 62-5 to a respectable 222-7 from their 50 overs.
We have mentioned ‘dropped catches’ but there were five held with wicket keeper Tim Piper pouching a pair – he also bagged a stumping – and single catches were held by skipper ‘Chaps’, Ross Acton and Kalann Nessling.
In terms of the wicket taking, the skipper got three more – all his were ‘aided’ by glovesman Piper, and he finished with figures of 3-28 from 10 overs.
Opening seamers Ross Acton and Kalann Nessling both sent down full shifts of 10 overs to return figures of 1-32 for Acton and 1-42 from Nessling.
Of the six bowlers used, Will Greig finished with 1-24 from four overs and Thom Bunker’s return was -52 from six while the only bowler not to get a wicket on the day was Tendai Maruma who finished with figures of 0-41 from 10 overs.
The reply was launched by Rory Thomas and Tim Piper, but the ‘star turn’ of the win over Sandford seven days before – Thomas – went from hero to zero as he holed out to four in the early stages and then Maruma was clearly left bemused at the decision of the umpire to adjudge him out leg before to leave the reply 16-2 and just four runs were added when Piper became the third wicket to fall. Skipper Chappell was next to go, caught for 20 with the total then 51-4, but Kian Burns joined Ross Acton and the pair took the chase into three figures before, with the total on 117, Burns was caught for a 54-ball knock of 28.
Eleven runs later Acton was back in the pavilion having faced 106 deliveries for his battling 45 – that was to be the side’s top offering with the bat on the day. Will Greig became the seventh wicket, he was out for a fourth ball duck to leave the chase on 130-7. All began to look lost, but Thom Bunker, promoted from the 2nd XI, joined Leon Horn and the pair took the fight to the home side and had added 53 when Bunker fell to a catch, but not before he had faced 24 balls, hitting a brace of sixes in his innings of 29. Horn fell soon after for a splendid 32-ball 38 and last man down was number 11 bat Max Cooper who did not trouble the scorers which left Kalann Nessling as the not out batsman on one with Bradninch all out for 190 after 47.5 overs.