Southwold’s Saturday XI beat Hardingham by a whopping 211 runs to complete an undefeated season and finish champions of Division 5 East – Stefan Clifford’s 103* and Edward Garrard’s 5/9 being the stand out performers on a warm but breezy day on Southwold Common.
The home team batted first and openers Clifford and Tom Chibnall began well in a game which was reduced to 30 overs each following a request from Hardingham. The pair cut loose – with rain forecast for the afternoon there was no time to waste – and they were aggressive in their stroke play. Clifford brought up his fifty in quick time before Chibnall recorded his first for the club before hitting a high full-toss down to deep backward square leg for a 69 ball 59. The opening duo had blasted 163 for the first wicket, and Clifford didn’t hold back following the wicket as he hit consecutive boundaries to bring up his hundred, off just 91 balls, before retiring. Matt Barbrook (25* off 11) continued the attack with two big sixes over the leg side, as he and Alex Britten (25* off 22) saw off the final overs with the home team posting 235/1 in 30 overs.
In reply, Garrard got the ball rolling as he bowled David Probert whilst at the other Jason Hall had A Propert chopping on before Garrard had captain Ecclestone pinned leg before for 8. Martin fenced Hall to Garrard in the gully as the pair combined for the fourth wicket before the tail folded, with Hall taking 3/5 and Garrard the remarkable figures of 5/9. The visitors to the Common were bundled for 24 and Southwold were league Champions.