Records tumbled in the muggy climes of Hethersett & Tas Valley as Southwold’s Saturday XI recorded the biggest margin of victory in the history of the Norfolk Cricket League – a staggering 350 runs.
Electing to bat first, Southwold’s openers got off to a flyer – 41 were taken off the first five overs as Matt Barbrook in particular picked the gaps and ran hard. When he was caught at slip off a good ball from youngster Tom Worley for 16, Stefan Clifford came in and kept the run rate up. Alex Britten was caught soon after reaching his half century in the 14th over which proved pivotal to the game as it resulted in Sam Booker coming to the wicket and, in tandem with Clifford, the pair scored heavily. Booker brought up his fifty after Clifford had done the same and the runs kept coming, even after Clifford was run out for 73 – 52 of which were scored in fours. David Barbrook played a typically breezy hand, smacking five boundaries and a six in his 40 before he was bowled by Davies – but at the other end Booker had reached his century. The final partnership laid the runs on thick and fast for Southwold as Booker, cutting loose on his way to a towering 156*, was joined by Luke Bailey who flogged the bowling to all parts and brought up his maiden fifty. Southwold reached 405/4 in their 45 overs – their highest total in living memory, which included the highest individual score in at least the past decade.
In reply, Hethersett & Tas Valley were subjected to a display of controlled bowling from Ed Garrard who recorded his first Southwold five-fer in his first season with the club en route to brilliant figures of 7/26 from 8 overs. At the other end, Luke Bailey kept the pressure up with a spell of good quick bowling which allowed Garrard to run through the opposition. Worley displayed some resistance to score a good 21 whilst Southwold’s fielding was mostly tight, including one brilliant catch from Trevor Clifford at square leg. When Terry Booker took his second wicket in his only over the hosts were all out for 55, and a 26 point victory was secured.
Although the scores were high it was a game played in good attitude throughout at a stunning ground, and Southwold will welcome Hethersett & Tas Valley to The Common in August. Next week they are at home as they host league leaders Great Witchingham.