Fighting spirit wins the day

BALDOCK Town again showed that winning is a habit by making it three in a row against Holtwhites Trinibis. Having lost the toss, on Saturday, Baldock were asked to bowl first on a decent but occasionally lively wicket, and despite a reasonable start by th

BALDOCK Town again showed that winning is a habit by making it three in a row against Holtwhites Trinibis.

Having lost the toss, on Saturday, Baldock were asked to bowl first on a decent but occasionally lively wicket, and despite a reasonable start by the hosts it was Logan Newman who got the Holtwhites batting star Hewitt out for 20.

This breakthrough slowed the run-rate but Holtwhites crept along quite well until Alistair Jones took the second wicket with the score on 48.

This led to a period of domination from Baldock as the bowling tightened up and then James Peacock took three quick wickets in an eight-over spell to turn the innings on its head.

Jones then chipped in with two more wickets in his marathon spell and Holtwhites were in trouble at 90-7.

However, Davies who had looked all at sea earlier on, suddenly found his range and with fine support from the number nine, Holtwhites added 60 for the ninth wicket with Davies crashing numerous boundaries back down the ground.

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The spin of Tim Dean finally saw his wicket fall and soon after Holtwhites were dismissed for a competitive 160 from 48 overs. Jones took 3-62 from 21 overs and Peacock 3-30 from eight overs.

Baldock's reply got off to a bad start as Adam Taylor was adjudged lbw in slightly dubious manner, and then with just 20 more runs added, three quick wickets fell to leave Baldock in trouble at 34-4.

The wicket of Rob Peacock which started the mini-collapse defied belief as he was given out lbw off the face of the bat.

However, James Peacock then started opening up and took the score to 58-4 and seemingly back on track. But when he was stumped brilliantly down the leg side for a hard-hitting 36, another brace of wickets fell to leave Baldock staring down the barrel at 91-7.

With both teams needing a win for very different reasons, it was all very tense and for the next few overs Baldock tried to keep wickets intact.

Then, slowly but surely, the pairing of Andy Payne and Jones started to get a grip on proceedings. Both batsmen started to find the boundary enough times to spread the field, which allowed runs to come more easily.

The pair batted fairly untroubled for 16 overs, adding 70 to take Baldock to 161-7, and a superb three-wicket win which sent them up to mid-table and out of trouble for at least one more week. Payne and Jones both ended up 35 not out.

Baldock are without a game on Saturday because Cottered have pulled out of the league. They face Millhillians the following week where a win will probably secure Division Five status for another year.

Baldock II survived torrential rain, thunderstorms and an abysmal batting performance to secure victory against Old Elizabethans II.

Winning the toss, Baldock elected to field, and the miserly opening partnership of Phil Lucy and Chris Lewis soon had Old Elizabethans under pressure.

Wickets fell at regular intervals, and at one stage Old Elizabethans were 46-6 before they managed to rebuild slightly to stumble to 104 all out from 51 overs.

Lucy finished with figures of 5-30 from 22 overs, and he was ably support by Chris Lewis, who took 3-28 from 18 overs.

During the tea interval, the rain started pouring down, and after some gentle persuasion from the confident Baldock side, play eventually resumed with Baldock needing 105 from 38 overs.

They got off to a solid start, with opener Richie Waters batting superbly again.

However, wickets soon began to tumble around Waters, and with the light fading over the damp track, scoring became increasingly difficult. When Waters was dismissed for 59, Baldock looked to have thrown away their chances of victory.

They were nine wickets down, still requiring six runs to win. After several tense overs, and a spectacular thunderstorm rumbling over the ground, last man Chris Lewis lofted a delivery down the ground for four to secure a one-wicket victory for Baldock.

The 30 points secured in this victory, on a day when many games in the division were abandoned, will prove invaluable to Baldock in their quest for promotion.

Baldock played Holwell, on Sunday, and were well beaten by 90 runs.

Holwell batted first and got off to a superb start with Julian Rudder and Nigel Pointing adding nearly 200 for the first wicket.

Rudder was caught for an excellent 99 and Pointing for 61 and then wickets began to fall as Holwell closed at 253-6 off 40 overs, with Bhavesh taking 3-29 and Rob Peacock 3-22.

Baldock decided to send in a big hitter in the shape of Logan Newman, who smashed 38 off 32 balls, with three sixes.

Adam Parkin got rid of this nuisance with a bouncer but Baldock kept the run-rate brisk as Rob Peacock scored a run-a-ball 36.

However, with the required run-rate increasing, the middle order struggled to keep up and wickets fell. With the match practically gone, Baldock batted out the 40 overs to end up on 163-6.

Rob Cant was 27 not out and Alistair Jones 19 not out and Holwell were convincing winners, with new boy Dixon taking 3-25.