We’ve broken our duck’

PUBLISHED: 11:22 02 August 2007 | UPDATED: 15:12 12 May 2010

Matt Graham Hard-working innings for Royston – Pic: 2502DW24

Matt Graham Hard-working innings for Royston – Pic: 2502DW24

DELIGHTED was the word Royston captain Craig Holson used to describe his feelings after his side chalked up their first win of the season. It has been a tough campaign for the CCA Senior League Division 1 side, having gone 12 games without victory. Ho

DELIGHTED" was the word Royston captain Craig Holson used to describe his feelings after his side chalked up their first win of the season.

It has been a tough campaign for the CCA Senior League Division 1 side, having gone 12 games without victory.

However, on Saturday Royston showed their character and persistence by beating Stapleford at home by 19 runs.

Holson said: "The win was much needed and after the game everyone was ecstatic. We celebrated by visiting most of Royston's hostelries! Victory has been a long time coming and no more than we have deserved."

Royston got off to a shaky start and lost Martyn Leek lbw in the fifth over.

Martin Goff's experience alongside his skipper pressed the home side on however, and the duo attacked the Stapleford bowling with a flurry of singles.

But when Royston lost Holson for a well-made 27, Mallows (12-1-45-4) then took the wickets of Goff (12) and Paul Miller.

Things looked even worse when Richard Temple was trapped by Lorimer for 13 and at 71-5 Royston looked to be toppling.

However, the innings was rescued when Matt Graham and 15-year-old Martin Leary put together a 50-run partnership to guide Royston to 133.

Graham grafted hard to notch up 33 before he finally went lbw. Both Matt Gillham (4), David Sladen (6) and Chris Hooton (7) added to the score, with Leary again showing maturity beyond his years and made a well-earned 33.

Royston dug deep and finished on a competitive 157.

Royston showed they meant business when Temple (12-4-30-3) brought a premature end to Lorimer's innings, with Chris Hootton seeing off Johnstone (13) lbw.

Veteran bowler Alan Hootton (12-1-27-3) then sent Fairey (18) packing thanks to a fine catch from Holson.

With more falling, only Stapleford's Rayner offered any resistance with a patient 36. But he was soon making his way when Gillham took his second wicket using his deadly off-spin to great effect.

Holson said: "For once I won the toss and chose to put confidence in our underperforming batting by electing to take the bull by the horns and bat first. After a slight blip, we recovered with Graham and Leary responding well.

"At only 15 years old Leary looks like he's going to be an important and valuable player for Royston over the coming years.


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