Thorpe Arnold CC go top as deadly attack strikes again

Mark Starkey got in on the act with the ball for Thorpe Arnold at Ashby EMN-190514-102549002
Mark Starkey got in on the act with the ball for Thorpe Arnold at Ashby EMN-190514-102549002
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Thorpe Arnold’s bowlers did the damage once more as the First XI extended their 100 per cent winning start to the County League season.

Having skittled Countesthorpe for seven last week, it was the turn of the Ashby Hastings batsmen to suffer on Saturday as they were tumbled out for 65.

Thorpe went on to complete a five-wicket win in bowler-friendly conditions and go 19 points clear at the top of Division Two.

Water had managed to get under the covers at Ashby, but despite rumours of a potentially abandoned game, the track dried out and captain Richard Randall won the toss and elected to bowl first.

Despite taking 5 for 4 the previous weekend, James Pepperdine took his turn at first change, allowing Mark Starkey to open with the ball.

Starkey struck in the first over when he snicked off the opening batsman and Kingsley Miller took a diving catch to his left.

He continued to swing the ball both ways and soon made it three wickets in a high-class first spell of the season.

At the other end, Myles Hickman again struck early with an unplayable deliver which deceived the batsman in as many ways as possible.

Hickman followed up his five-wicket haul against Countesthorpe with another four, before Pepperdine mopped up the tail to also finish with three wickets as the hosts were bowled out for 65 in just 20 overs.

Miller and Lewis Perry came straight out to bat and Miller began by smashing the ball wherever he pleased as the first over went for 26.

He had reached 35 after just two more overs, but then skied hi next delivery into the air and was caught.

Perry went without scoring, but Starkey decided to get on with the game and added a quick 16.

At four, Hickman scooped the first ball straight to fine leg, and Adam Clarke came out to bash the last few runs, only to be run out.

But Charlie Read made an unbeaten five and Sam Pollard finished the game with a six after just 10 overs of batting.

Another comfortable afternoon for the first team who finished their business at 3.30pm.

On Saturday, Thorpe will be bidding to make it five straight wins at home to Sileby (1pm start).