Plymouth’s pursuit of North Devon at the top of the table suffered a minor diversion as they were held to a winning draw by Bradninch.
Doug Hewitt (40) and Nick Read (36) were the leading run getters as Plymouth hoisted 242 for nine in 50 overs. Bradninch were 212 for six when their overs ran out, which looks a safe enough distance behind.
Ten overs out Bradninch required 143 to win with six wickets in hand and looked like getting nowhere near it. Then Louis Storm (42no) and Sean Nowak (43) started to flog the bowling around in a stand of 68 for the sixth wicket. In one three-over rush the pair added 47, with Kevin Davis and Nick Read both tasting the lash. Nowak clubbed three sixes in quick succession when the assault was in full cry.
The clock was always against Bradninch though and once Nowak went to Chris Hadfield (1-38) the visitors shut up shop.
Earlier, Plymouth had been pretty consistent down the order with veteran Steve Luffman the only batter to miss out completely. Skipper Callum Whittaker was caught behind for 26, James Toms made 12 before Novak got him, Hewitt was the first of three scalps for left-armer Ross Acton and Jake Luffman fell lbw to veteran Paul Nott (2-32) having added 65 with Hewitt for the fourth wicket.
Plymouth slowed up for a while and were glad of some lower-order impetus from Dave Burke and Davis (24) for helping add 56 for the last two wickets.
Budleigh Salterton’s win at Sidmouth means they move past Plymouth into second place and leave the city side 20 points behind the leaders.
Whittaker said the game proved not all draws are dull.
“It was a good game that only fizzled out into a draw right at the end,”
We batted well in patches with people getting in then out! They bowled well to keep us to 240, then we bowled well with our new ball and tied them down to get them behind the run rate.”