Belper Meadows 1sts enjoyed another good weekend, consolidating their place on top of the DCCL Division 6N and then earning a place in the semi-final of the Boolers Wright Cup.
On Saturday, West Hallam won the toss and had no hesitation in inserting the Meadows, which backfired as a partnership of 195 between openers Mike Cox (104) and Joe Slater (83) saw the West Hallam bowling attack toil in the heat.
In fact, only three wickets fell in Meadows’ total of 243 from their 46 overs. The two run scorers played really well in early difficult conditions but as time went on Cox hit a number of huge sixes while Slater timed the ball impressively.
In reply, Hallam started strongly, knowing full well that a win would be required to make up ground on their nearest rivals. The openers peppered the short boundary putting on 50 for the first wicket before Joe Slater picked up a wicket with his first ball.
Meanwhile, Dan Kelly had bowled a tremendous opening spell while Matt Jones bowled 14 overs straight through, picking up 3-40 cleaning, bowling two with the other caught at the wicket by George Hudson.
At 100-5, West Hallam decided to shut up shop and plodded along to end on 143-6 for the full 46 overs with Dave Jenkins picking up a wicket.
All the Meadows bowlers performed on what was a very hot afternoon, as Meadows gained 18 points to their opponents’ five.
On Sunday, Meadows’ skipper Pete Brookes won the toss and decided to bat on another extremely hot afternoon and flat looking wicket in the Boolers Wright Cup quarter finals.
Openers Brookes and Slater put on 50 for the first wicket. Runs were easy to come by as James Fowler and Slater put on another 50 runs before Slater was leg before for a solid 40. This brought James Cox to the crease and he immediately went into full flow, dispatching anything loose to the boundary.
Fowler played fluently for a solid 43, then Neil Horton helped Cox passed his 50 before Cox edged one at the wicket for a match winning 78. George Hudson (24) and Horton 29 not out carried on the good work as Meadows ended on 241-4 from their 45 overs. h.
In reply, Meadows soon had hold of the game as the visitors were 49-3 from 15 overs, before a partnership of 83 saw a glimmer of hope for Hallam.
However, 14-year-old Wykeham Bosworth-Nightingale ensured that the Meadows were well in the driving seat, breaking up the partnership with two quick wickets.
At 145-7, a further partnership of 70 saw Hallam creep closer but as the overs were eaten up, the innings ended on 215 from the full 45 overs.
For Meadows, Matt Jones took 2-28, Rich Howis 1-29, Bosworth-Nightingale 2-39 and Dave Farnsworth 2-34.
Meadows now progress to the semi-final of the Wright Cup, to take place on July 21.