Royston skipper chips in with five wickets

SKIPPER Paul Harris claimed five wickets as Royston made it three wins in a row by defeating Helions Bumpstead away by 28 runs on Saturday.

It was the first time this season Harris had bowled so it bodes well.

The day had not started so well though as the home side won the toss putting Royston in to bat.

Mick Miller and Rory Harper opened the batting, however the former was dismissed and was soon to be followed by Harper leaving the score at 36-2.

Paul Miller came and went, scoring only a single boundary before edging behind to keeper Wallis, to signal the arrival of Bonham Harper at the crease to join Martin Leary.

In an effort to stabilise the innings, the two of them looked not to take any risks, instead batting steadily in order to regain a degree of control.

Such a tactic was soon abandoned as the introduction of Suckling into the bowling attack was met by an onslaught by Bonham Harper who sent a flurry of boundaries through the covers.

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Harper raced to 35 before finally being bowled by a half-tracker that had no right to take a wicket, with the score at 86-4.

Paul Leary joined his brother in the middle and the pair began to make hay with quick running between the wickets.

Paul was caught for 27, bringing to an end a fifth wicket partnership of 54, the Royston total being 140-5.

Martin continued on in steady fashion as a couple of quick wickets fell, before Jon Harper came out to meet him at 157-7 and together the two of them hit out in the last five overs.

A succession of boundaries and singles saw the Crows to a final score of 201-7 in their 40 overs, Leary ending on 62 not out and Harper unbeaten with 25.

Helions got off to a poor start in reply and bowlers Max Kindred and Martin Leary did not take long to bag early wickets, as the hosts stumbled to 22-3.

Adam Suckling (71) and Jake Manning (41) turned the tide for Helions as between them they piled on a partnership of 107 for the fourth wicket in the space of about 15 overs.

This manoeuvred Helions into a favourable position, as they required 73 runs to win with seven wickets still in hand.

Royston skipper Harris had other ideas though and took the decision to bring himself into the attack, a decision that was to have a devastating effect.

Within the next 10 overs, Helions collapsed from 129-4 to 165-9, with Harris taking his five wickets.

Kindred came back for a second spell to wrap up proceedings, bowling Kirk Chilton for 27 as he ended with figures of 4-48.

Helions had capitulated to 173 all out and handed Royston a 28-run victory.

Captain Paul Harris, said: “I think that in the end, we deserved the win.”