Southwold’s 1st XI continued their fine start to the season against Acle on Saturday, as they chased down 117 on a tricky pitch to win by 7 wickets.
It was a somewhat damp start to the day when the Southwold players arrived at Acle: the wicket was uncovered and very wet and with rain still falling lightly it was eventually decided that the game would start at 2pm and be restricted to 35 overs each.
Southwold won the toss and bowled, and the attack started strongly with Jason Hall taking a wicket in his first over, as McMahon gloved his first ball behind to keeper Stefan Clifford. The next wicket took slightly longer to fall with Acle opener Michael Hendry scoring a brutal 59, launching six sixes over the short leg side boundary as Acle pressed on to 72/1. However, he soon lifted Gareth Gorst-Allman to Matt Barbrook at deep midwicket and, following his dismissal, the Acle batting order slowly collapsed with four good performances from Southwold’s bowlers. Gorst-Allman was near unplayable as he finished with 5/23, Ed Garrard recorded figures of 2/28, Steve Hines finished his spell with 2/45, whilst Jason Hall’s 1/18 does not do justice to the pressure he exerted on the home team’s batsmen, who finished with just 116.
After tea the visitors started in shaky fashion, as Barbrook chipped a drive to cover in the first over and just three overs later Clifford gloved one down the legside to be caught by keeper Harry Gooch. Gorst-Allman batted strongly in the company of captain Booker and the pair looked set to finish things yet. on 43, he steered one from Howard Butcher to Jones at slip. This was to be the final success of the day for Acle, as despite a scratchy start, Alex Britten (23*) helped Sam Booker finish the game off, the visiting captain remaining unbeaten on 47 and the league leaders rounding off a good 7 wicket victory.
The beaten Southwold 1st XI side take on Halvergate next week on the Common, in a game starting at 2pm.