For the first time in what to date, has been an exceptional campaign, both the 1st and 2nd XI teams suffered defeats – on the same day – and both against teams from Cornwood CC!
The senior side’s loss at Cornwood is not as damaging as the 2nd XI’s home defeat in the grander scheme of things. Results elsewhere in the ‘A’ Division leave Bradninch still comfortably clear of 3rd placed Cornwood who with six games and 120 points to play for are 31 points adrift.
Ryan Butterworth picked up four wickets and skipper Joel Murphy claimed three but Cornwood reached maximum batting points, closing on 200-8. Their overseas pace man whipped out both Bradninch openers in the first over and the die was cast with the reply floundering on 117. The biggest total on the visitors’ score card was ‘extras’ which accounted for 30.
A second defeat of an otherwise excellent season for the 1st XI does not mean doom and gloom, quite the opposite for all sides suffer defeats. The better ones bounce back immediately and that’s what Murphy’s men will need to do on Saturday when they host Bovey Tracey at Kensham Park, however as one renowned ‘1st XI watcher’ proclaimed the morning after the afternoon before:
“This may be just the ‘wake up call’ that was needed, for with promotion looking more and more likely the team need to recognise that they are not invincible and that they can deal with defeat in the correct manner. Saturday’s game with Bovey should show us what this side is made of.”
Back at the club’s Mid Devon base though, the defeat for the 2nd XI put a serious dent in their bid to reach the top flight of 2nd XI cricket next summer. Visiting Cornwood II enjoyed batting with some sun on their bats knocking up an imposing 246-6. Vice Captain Phil Chappell bagged a brace and long standing club servant Simon Bailey topped that with 3-78. Bailey then hit 23, the same total chalked up by skipper Chris Dean whilst the biggest single contribution came from Chris Acton with 26 but despite five home batsmen ‘getting in’ and reaching the 20 run mark, none stuck around to enable a run chase to be effected and the reply closed on 141.
With six to play Bradninch find themselves three places and 31 points behind 2nd placed Bovey Tracey, who they visit on Saturday. That now takes on the mantle of a ‘must win’ game if the 2nd XI are to have any chance of a place in the Premier Division next season.