Cricket: Marlborough v Purton - Partnerships help Marlborough beat Purton
West Of England Premier League (Wilts Division)
Marlborough v Purton 4th June 2016
Marlborough 223-5; Purton 152 all out
Marlborough won by 71 runs
Marlborough were playing rivals Purton this weekend in a competitive fixture which saw Purton leading the Wiltshire league. Marlborough had a slightly changed side from the Westbury fixture as key players Arran Dickinson and Ben Head were not available for selection, however the youth of Fraser Gordon and David West proved to be a very helpful asset to the team in a match kindly sponsored by club stalwart Mark Cooper.
Marlborough won the toss and although it was not a certain decision with the overcast conditions, went with their home knowledge and batted. Nick Crabbe and Fraser Gordon opened the batting and although the Purton bowlers used the heavy cloud cover well, both batsmen ground out the first ten overs starting to put together a positive partnership.
The Purton bowling attack seemed to become beleaguered and frustrated at an early stage and the captain had to make several bowling changes to try and make something happen. Marlborough held fast and knew they were in the ascendency and could really go on to punish the poor bowling with this excellent partnership really taking shape. Marlborough were 97-1 at drinks, Crabbe and Gordon both passed their fifties and the partnership ended on an outstanding 153.
This was a spectacle of how to bat at Marlborough and demonstrated the potential of patient batting early in the innings. As Homani came to the wicket in the 38th over it was all set-up for the batting team as they were able to keep the over rate ticking along well. Homani, Day and Painter all chipped in with useful runs at the later stage of the innings and Marlborough closed their innings on 223-5
At tea there was a positive attitude amongst the players knowing that they have the potential to do something great but knew they had to work hard. Balusa and Fox continued in a positive way with the ball and Balusa is becoming an extremely reliable foil for Fox as an opening bowling partnership. Although wickets did not come easily in the first 12 overs the two bowlers stuck to their task and fought hard to keep the game under control.
The Purton overseas player, Pitchers was looking to get on the front foot and dominate the bowling and run positively. However in a moment of madness took on the arm of Painter who ran him out for 26 with a direct hit at the bowlers end. This brought Bowler to the crease and again he looked to get on with the task until he was caught out in the deep off the bowling of Smith by the safe hands of Langton. With Balusa having bowled his overs, this brought Gordon and Smith to bowl in tandem, both taking pace off the ball and bowling with good accuracy, the Purton batsmen seemed to get more and more frustrated and were unable to put together a partnership of any substance. Both Smith and Gordon ended with 3 wickets apiece and the Purton innings was in disarray. Marlborough bowled out Purton for 152, one run shy of Marlborough’s opening stand.
Credit must go to the batsmen who took on board the changes needed to make a good score. The team is clearly coming together with progress being made in each game. Marlborough travel to Devizes looking to maintain the progress.