Setback for Ashwell

PUBLISHED: 12:57 07 June 2007 | UPDATED: 15:08 12 May 2010

Ashwell bowler and vice captain Jonathan Merrell – Pic: Dick Harding

Ashwell bowler and vice captain Jonathan Merrell - Pic: Dick Harding

A BELOW-par batting performance scuppered Ashwell s chances of increasing their lead at the top of Cambridgeshire Junior Division 2, as they lost to a strong Dullingham side by 49 runs. Ashwell took to the field and entrusted Martin Talks and Matt Skeldi

A BELOW-par batting performance scuppered Ashwell's chances of increasing their lead at the top of Cambridgeshire Junior Division 2, as they lost to a strong Dullingham side by 49 runs.

Ashwell took to the field and entrusted Martin Talks and Matt Skelding to do some early damage to the Dullingham top order.

The Dullingham captain was smartly stumped by Richard Young off the bowling of Skelding in the second over, but the manner of the breakthrough showed that the Dullingham batsmen were not about to be dictated to or stifled by the Ashwell bowlers.

Having seen Dullingham race to 32-1 from the first six overs, Gary Simmons was brought into the attack.

Dullingham's in-form Chris Baldwin had scored 146 in his previous league match, but took more than 20 overs to reach 35, with tight bowling from Simmons (10-1-27-1) and Talks (9-1-29-1).

Nevertheless, when Baldwin's innings ended in the 24th over, Dullingham were 83-2 and had the platform to attack Ashwell's bowling.

The hosts maintained their discipline and concentration in the field, and thwarted a number of boundaries for the Dullingham batsmen.

Matt Skelding came back for a second spell to pick up two wickets for 38, and captain Tim Moynihan brought himself on to bowl and initiated a startling collapse in the visitors' innings.

Moynihan then dismissed a number of batsmen with a mixture of hitting the stumps and straightforward lbw decisions, and finished with 6-26 from his seven overs.

Moynihan brought the Dullingham innings to a close one over short of the allotted maximum, and they were all out for 155 in 39 overs.

The home side's reply began tentatively against their opponents' opening bowlers and their attack caused problems with their variation.

Pete Davis smashed a couple of boundaries, but fell when attempting another, feathering a catch through to the wicket keeper for 12.

Jonathan Merrell and Gary Simmons came and went cheaply, but opener Martyn Deal remained at the crease and ensured their innings did not collapse, with Ashwell reaching the midpoint at 39-2.

When Deal went for 22, Ashwell were 55-4 in the 25th over, and it was clear that the middle order were going to have to play some big shots.

Tim Moynihan took the attack to Dullingham, swinging a pair of sixes out of the ground on the leg side, and then hitting a huge straight six that comfortably cleared the clubhouse.

While Moynihan remained, there was always a chance that the rate needed could be achieved, but as overs and partners began to reduce, he was bowled for 29 to leave Ashwell all out for 106.

Vice captain Merrell said: "Overall this represented a below-par batting performance, against the first consistently accurate bowling attack that we have come across this season.

"Hopefully the team will get back to winning ways on Saturday when we travel to Little Shelford.

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