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Match is a gripper despite Belvoir's losing draw

South Notts League

Division A

Collingham & District 247-4

Belvoir 212-7

In cricket, you sometimes you get a flurry of runs. At Belvoir on Saturday they came in form of a veritable blizzard.

In Collingham’s innings, there were 17 cultured fours in an exciting 94-ball century from Muhammad Naeem. He was ably supported by Jack Copley (28), clearing the boundary twice in pugnacious style, captain Olly Dyson with a thunderous 70 (his last 60 coming from 36 balls), and a spritely 25 not out from Rob Matchett.

In the 39 overs available, Collingham scored at a rate of 6.3 despite a stubborn effort from the Belvoir bowlers and some sharp fielding, which included two catches and a stumping for Ryan Lewis and an excellent catch by Danny Ross.

After tea, Lee Fazackerley (2-36) and David Pipes (2-39) slowed the runfest down to a trickle as Belvoir struggled to 3-10 in eight overs. However, Tom Neville was getting his eye in and nobody thrashes a ball about as violently as Neville with his eye in.

He reached 50 relatively calmly and them slapped and bashed a second 50 in 33 balls, including a run of 29 from seven of them. He eventually fell for 108 to a good catch by Dyson off the persevering Naeem.

But none of this happens without effort at the other end. Phil Irvine helped to steady things in a fourth wicket stand of 47. Sam Penford bludgeoned three sixes in a lightning 22. And Joe Bottomley (24) stood firm in a partnership of 53 for the sixth wicket.

Nevertheless, those early tight overs from Pipes and Fazackerley meant the asking rate rose to 12.5 with 10 overs to go. When Neville holed out at 196-7, the chance of a miracle victory evaporated.

It was left to captain Lewis Dann and Ross to see out the last few overs and secure the lesser end of a draw. But, once again, the cricket was gripping from start to finish.


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