Southwold went down swinging on a sunny afternoon on the Common against Kesgrave, as they lost by 41 runs. Fielding first, opening bowlers Steve Hines and Gareth Gorst-Allman kept a tight line, ensuring there was little in the way of freebies to hit. Indeed Gallant had only two runs to his name before he edged Hines to Gorst-Allman in the slips, the off-spinner taking a sharp catch. Warne and Colver built a steady partnership, frustrating the bowlers and one which was frustrating the hosts, until a good ball from Hines broke the pair, as Warne edged behind to keeper Willgoss for a well made 24.
This brought Paul Budd to the wicket, who dropped anchor – though immediately looked at ease. Despite Jordan Barber having Colver caught and bowled brilliantly for 26, Budd was not troubled and went about his business with no great fuss. Joined by his captain M.Warne, the duo picked up the momentum during the last 10 overs of their innings, putting together a strong partnership that lifted Kesgrave. They reserved harsh treatment to Craig Gorst-Allman, Ryan Edmonds and Liam Smith – although the introduction of Smith did bring about the 4th wicket to fall, as he yorked the skipper Warne for 45. Budd continued his clean striking in reaching 80* by the end of the innings after a flurry of fours and one towering six over long off that dribbled onto the golf course fairway.
Southwold knew that they had to bat well to chase down 202 and Gareth Gorst-Allman got stuck into some lacklustre short stuff from Retter to get their chase off to a good start. Unfortunately, Porter could not replicate the good form he showed last week as he missed a straight one that kept low from Colver, bringing Barber to the crease. Relieved of his wicketkeeping duties for the match turned out to be a decision that invigorated Barber as he dealt solely in boundaries. With running two simply not on the cards with this pair, Kesgrave struggled to contain the batsmen as they played their strokes freely and appeared visibly frustrated, with the captain Warne in particular vociferously disputing a not out LBW decision. Just two short of a well deserved half century, Gorst-Allman’s occupation of the crease expired, as he was bowled by Warne. At this point in the game and despite Barber and Gorst-Allman’s excellent partnership, Southwold were starting to slip behind the run rate.
Liam Smith was next to the wicket but he fell quickly, caught behind off Thomson as he looked to up the rate – and he was joined in the pavilion shortly after by keeper Ben Willgoss after a busy 15, stumped off Thomson. Barber’s dismissal was the final nail in the sun bleached coffin that was Southwold’s batting performance as he was bowled, again by Thomson, who added Daryl Hill to his tally soon afterwards – the offspinner ripping out Southwold’s middle order with a good spell, ending with 4-30 off 7 overs. The match ended with Paul Budd getting a hattrick with the final three balls of the match as he removed Steve Hines, Shane Gosling and Ryan Edmonds in successive deliveries, a limp end to an innings that had much promise.
Southwold will be keen to bounce back strongly away at BT & Waldringfield next week.