AMMAN BACK IN THE GROOVE
AMMANFORD returned to winning form in the South Wales Premier league with an emphatic seven-wicket victory at Mumbles.
Standout performances by two of their players – Matthew Fisher with the ball and Andrew Salter with the bat – guided Ammanford back to within striking distance of the first division title and ensured their focus will be sharply retained for the second half of the season.
Mumbles were unable to cope with Fisher’s bowling and his figures of 6-18 contributed handsomely towards curtailing the home side to 172-9 in their 50 overs.
The excellence of Ammanford’s ground fielding was once again worthy of comment and saved a substantial number of runs.
For Mumbles, opener James Palmer got 42 while Chris Cooke stayed around for 36. Aneurin Norman was unbeaten at the end on 49.
Ammanford’s response was dominated by an excellent century from Salter, who departed for 101 when Ammanford were just five runs short of their target.
Salter and fellow opener Rhys Culley shattered any hope Mumbles might have harboured about defending their total with an opening stand of 115.
When Culley was bowled for 33, his supporting role was taken up by Daniel Roberts (23no), and despite losing a further wicket, Ammanford cruised comfortably to victory with seven wickets and five overs in hand.
Lying in fifth place, Ammanford will be only too aware that, with only 22 points separating the top five clubs, an assault on the summit is very much within their grasp.
Their next two matches, against third-placed Neath at home this Saturday and leaders St Fagans away the following week, could be instrumental in deciding the destination of this season’s first division title.
Ammanford Seconds, meanwhile, suffered a comprehensive 116-run defeat at the hands of Mumbles at the Park in the Premier League West 2nd XI championship.
Mumbles reached 231-8 in their 50 overs, thanks mainly to Luke Edwards (47) and Will Turner (48).
For Ammanford, Tomos Roach, Callum Croft and Jamie Evans bagged a couple of wickets each.
In reply, Ammanford were dismissed for 115 in 20 overs.
Only Callum Croft with a fighting unbeaten 47 provided any real resistance.
And in division six of the South Wales Cricket Association, Ammanford Thirds won a low-scoring thriller by two wickets against Landore Seconds.
They dismissed Landore for 67 in 34 overs. Llyr Morgan, Iestyn Jones and Rhys Hope took two wickets each.
Ammanford reached their target within 20 overs but not before losing eight wickets in the process.
Their top scorer was opener Rhys Hope with 19.
Carmarthen Wanderers batsman Steve Inward hits out against Gorseinon. Pic: Phil Davies