Ilkeston Rutland come so close to beating leaders Marehay - video
Division One leaders Marehay proved too strong for Ilkeston Rutland on Saturday although their one wicket victory was ultimately a close-run thing.
The result means Marehay are 11 points clear at the top, while Rutland remain rooted in a mid-table position and highly unlikely to go up or down this season.
The hosts’ captain Rob Peat won the toss and opted to give Ilkeston first knock.
Rutland moved steadily on to 23 without loss before a sudden collapse saw them lose four wickets with only one more run scored.
Opener David Smit was out lbw to James Kyte and then Kabeer Imtiaz enjoyed a devastating spell that saw him see off Ahsan Tariq, Akhil Patel and then Scott Law, the latter two without scoring.
It was then 38-5 when Shaun Levy was Kyte’s second victim, one of three catches for wicket keeper Mitchell Robinson.
Luke Marriott and Sam Moulds steadied things and took the score to 75 but another quick pair of wickets saw both removed, the latter run out for nought after Marriott had gone for 29, bowled by Peat.
Rob Green (48) and George Moulds, however, aided a recovery and along with some useful knocks from the tail, Ilkeston were bowled out for 174.
Marehay’s reply also saw them lose two quick wickets having made it to 20, Green taking both.
Having at one point been 79-3, Daniel Palmer and Jonathan Bradder stood firm to take Marehay to 139-4 before five wickets fell for just five runs as Ilkeston looked to produce a victory out of nowhere.
However, the last pair of Bill Hartley and Robinson would both end unbeaten on 14 as they helped Marehay pass the target with seven balls to spare.For Ilkeston, Green ended with figures of 3 for 40, Law 3 for 38 and Patel 2 for 23.