Ball and du Plooy hold steady


Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Cricket -

A third-wicket cen­tury stand be­tween Adam Ball and Leus du Plooy un­der­pinned Ten­ter­den’s suc­cess­ful run-chase in their three-wicket win at for­mer Premier Di­vi­sion lead­ers Sand­wich Town on Satur­day.

The fifth vic­tory of the cam­paign leaves the Morghew Park side fourth in the ta­ble, and a step closer to en­sur­ing Premier Di­vi­sion sur­vival for a third sea­son. They lie six points ahead of de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Hart­ley, beaten for the third time in five games at Bex­ley.

Young­ster Rory Smith’s half- cen­tury de­layed Ten­ter­den’s early progress, after the home side won the toss and bat­ted, even­tu­ally clos­ing on 188-9.

Ball (60) and du Plooy (53) res­cued the side from a poor start (12-2), Lin­den Lock­hart fol­lowed up with 31, be­fore Sam Weller and Tom Richards’ big-hit­ting won the game in style with more than an over to spare.

Kent seamer Matt Hunn had ear­lier sent back Chris Ver­non and Ben Price with only five on the board for Ten­ter­den.

Ver­non was bowled for a sixball duck, with Price (5) dis­missed in sim­i­lar fash­ion, un­able to fol­low up his dou­ble cen­tury of the pre­vi­ous week.

Ball and du Plooy dug-in, with some clever and neat bat­ting, both pass­ing 50, be­fore fall­ing in the space of seven runs.

Du Plooy hit six fours in his 94-ball knock, tak­ing his league to­tal for the sea­son to 529, while Ball struck a six and three bound­aries from 90 de­liv­er­ies.

Sand­wich hit the ropes three times, be­fore Weller had Zack Fagg (12) caught be­hind by Price, and Tyler Grif­fin ran-out young­ster Jor­dan Cox (5) to make it 30-2.

Ball, with two wick­ets, and Ali Neale re­duced the home side to 75-5, and du Plooy then had Grant Ste­wart (17) held by Ball.

Matt Hunn made 22, be­fore Ball helped left-arm spinner Ran­jit Singh re­move Smith (56 – six fours off 100 balls).

An­drew Crawford (47) and Jamie Drewe (32) top scored as Ten­ter­den 2nds (189) lost by 16 runs at home to Sand­wich 2nds.

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