Derby de­cided in fi­nal over

DENLY HELPS STEER STRUG­GLERS WHIT­STABLE TO SEA­SON’S FIRST VIC­TORY WITH JUST THREE DE­LIV­ER­IES RE­MAIN­ING

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - - Cricket -

Team man­ager Nick Denly hopes Whit­stable’s stun­ning last-over win against ri­vals Can­ter­bury will prove the turn­ing point of their sea­son.

Af­ter los­ing all five pre­vi­ous matches in Kent League, Di­vi­sion 1, the hosts se­cured a stun­ning five-wicket vic­tory with just three balls to spare at the Bel­mont on Satur­day.

Denly said: “Hope­fully this is the game which turns our sea­son around. We needed a boost and it’s cer­tainly been a great one for us at an im­por­tant time.

“We ex­pect Can­ter­bury to be up there press­ing for pro­mo­tion. We know they are a qual­ity side, so for us to per­form like that, for it all to come to­gether on the day, is pleas­ing.”

The rock-bottom hosts raised their game and af­ter win­ning the toss and opt­ing to field, re­stricted their pro­mo­tion­chas­ing neigh­bours to 228-9 from 50 overs.

Stu­art Drake­ley’s breezy 67 pro­vided the main re­sis­tance while opener Max Camp­bell hit 33 against his for­mer club.

Open­ing bowler Ben Mills, just 15, was the pick of the at­tack with 3-44 from 10 overs while Scott Dale took 2-35.

The hosts were reel­ing af­ter quickly los­ing both open­ers but Sam Denly top scored with a near run-a-ball 73 which fea­tured four fours and as many sixes.

He shared an ul­ti­mately match-win­ning third-wicket stand with Dean Lewis – in his fi­nal game for the club – who cracked eight fours and cleared the rope once in his 63.

To add to his good day, Lewis caught brother El­liot off the bowl­ing of Dale in Can­ter­bury’s in­nings.

Denly and Lewis de­parted with the out­come in the bal­ance but there was su­perb sup­port from James Loader who hit an un­beaten 54 from just 41 balls with five fours and two sixes and Stu­art Sin­clair who needed just 19 balls to make 30 not out, which helped his side ac­cel­er­ate to reach their tar­get in the fi­nal over.

Aadarsh Shah had the best Can­ter­bury fig­ures with 2-27 from nine overs for the vis­i­tors, whose third de­feat saw them slip 13 points out­side the pro­mo­tion places.

James Wider­strom claimed five wick­ets as St Lawrence & High­land Court beat Gravesend by 172 runs to lead the way in Di­vi­sion 2.

Over­seas Graeme Tryon hit 64 and skip­per Will Hil­ton and Jamie Vant-har­ri­son 44 each as Saints piled on the runs to close on 284-9.

Tryon (2-28) helped sti­fle the start of the re­ply and al­though the vis­i­tors reached 95-3, Wider­strom then took over to help dis­miss Gravesend for just 112, claim­ing 5-28 in 8.4 overs.

The fifth win in six kept Saints top, al­though on the same points as Upchurch who won in the fi­nal over.

Josh Lock stole the show as third-placed Ch­est­field picked up their fourth win in the same di­vi­sion with a fivewicket suc­cess at home to Sibton Park.

Three wick­ets each from skip­per Tim Collins and over­seas Dy­lan Hunter and 2-15 off seven from Dar­rell Carter helped re­strict the vis­i­tors to 210-9 from 50 overs, hav­ing been 134-2 at one stage.

The hosts were strug­gling at 16-2 in re­ply but Hunter made a run-a-ball 44 to steady the in­nings, shar­ing 79 for the third wicket with Josh Lock, who went on to com­pile a su­perb un­beaten 99 from just 89 de­liv­er­ies.

Al­though his side slipped to 128-5, Lock shared an un­bro­ken 84 for the sixth wicket with Joseph Mitchell (36 not out) to guide his side home with nearly 10 overs to spare.

Ch­est­field are 14 points adrift of the lead­ers and Upchurch in sec­ond.

Danny Hax­ton’s half-cen­tury was in vain for Faver­sham as they were swept away at Walmer in Di­vi­sion 5.

Hax­ton made 52 and Jack Good­e­nough an un­beaten 40 as the vis­i­tors made 196-9 but de­spite an early break­through by Chris Streat­field (2-62), the hosts eased home with seven wick­ets and as many overs to spare. Ben Line smashed an un­beaten 66 from just 22 balls to in­spire Can­ter­bury 2nds’ dra­matic 2nd XI Di­vi­sion 1 win over lead­ers Lordswood.

Hugh Scott took 4-45 as the vis­i­tors were held to 267-9 from 50 overs and open­ers Bradley Gold­sack and Joe Gor­don each passed 50 to get the re­ply on track but it was Line’s su­perb knock, which saw him hit seven fours and three sixes, which got his side home with two overs re­main­ing,

Stu­art Cle­ments took 3-21 and Ju­lian Thomp­son hit an un­beaten 61 but Whit­stable 2nds were beaten by 21 runs at Hart­ley in the Pre­mier Di­vi­sion.

Robert Camp­bell’s un­beaten 97 and 54 from tailen­der Guy Hil­ton were in vain as St Lawrence & High­land Court 2nds were thwarted by hosts Old Elthami­ans in Di­vi­sion 3.

The vis­i­tors made 242 but the hosts clung on to reach 160-9 at the close.

Pic­tures: Chris Davey FM4806378

Whit­stable’s Sam Denly on his way to a top score of 73 against Can­ter­bury at The Bel­mont Ground on Satur­day

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