Belper Meadows 1st XI had mixed fortunes this weekend as firstly they travelled to Division Five leaders Selston and were beaten by four wickets after losing the toss.
Meadows reached a total of 191-8 in their 46 overs with Mike Cox top scoring with a powerful 97, hitting a number of sixes along the way.
Neil Horton chipped in with 27 and Tom Hunt ended undefeated on 17.
In reply, Selston got off to a good start as a first wicket stand of 50 put the hosts in the driving seat with Max Bexon scoring a positive 40. It was however the number three bat James Lindley who was the mainstay of the Selston reply as he put away anything slightly off line and moved the hosts ever closer to their target.
A number of wickets fell with Dave Jenkins bowling a great spell of 10 overs, three maidens, 3-15. With five overs to spare, Lindley hit the winning runs ending on 74 to leave the Meadows downhearted as they really needed to get a positive result from this game as Selston now open up a 56-point game at the top of the table.
On Sunday, it was time to turn to the defence of their Wright Cup campaign as Darley Abbey were the visitors to Christchurch Meadows on another glorious sunny day and the wicket looked an absolute belter.
Abbey won the toss and, having already chased down on the opening day of the season against Meadows, had no hesitation in asking the hosts to bat first.
Belper openers Ben McGonigal and Joe Slater really enjoyed batting on this wicket as an opening stand of 216 was put on with both batsmen complimenting each other well.
McGonigal took the attack to the sword dispatching anything loose whilst Slater moved along and upped a gear as the innings progressed. McGonigal reached 176, hitting 15 fours and 10 sixes, in just 125 balls in superb fashion, whilst Slater ended on 61 with five fours.
Other contributions came from Horton, Robinson and Marshall as a total of 304-5 was reached in their 45 overs. Darley Abbey’s skipper Tim Pickup returned the figures of 5-47.
In reply, Darley Abbey knew that they may as well give it their all and that they did that as Tim Pickup played an aggressive role, helped along with a number of partnerships on the way as Meadows found the going tough as the wicket was so batsman-friendly, coupled with a short boundary on one side.
Only Dave Jenkins really got anything out of the pitch as he ended with figures of 1-39 off of his nine overs. Adam Holland removed the dangerous Brierley with a quicker ball and Neil Horton picked up two wickets, one being the prize of Tim Pickup for a super 101 from 109 balls.
D Fitzpatrick with a 59-ball 80 edged the visitors closer to their target with T Fitzpatrick and Hall chipping in with 31 and 39 respectively as the visitors ended just 21 runs short on 283-5, which was a magnificent effort on the day.
It was a really well fought first round tie with nearly 600 runs being scored, which was a credit to the Belper Meadows groundsman Geoff Cowburn.
This sees Meadows through to the 2nd round on June 15, also at home to South Wingfield.
This Saturday, Meadows play host to Ilkeston Rutland with the start time yet to be decided.