A FINE batting display by Swarkestone’s Alex Hughes was the catalyst as Sandiacre’s stuttering start to the season continued on Saturday.
Hughes struck 114 not out as his side posted a good total of 275-7, a score which Town could ultimately not get near.
Things started well for Sandiacre with Dan Wheeldon removing Jamie Guthrie for a duck with the score on ten, but fellow opener Luke Thomas then took charge with a fine knock of 78 before he was finally caught by John Trueman off the bowling of Jono Clare.
Tom Hamilton had fallen to Ryan McFadyean in between, and it was just as well Hughes performed as well as he did because once Thomas was removed, none of his partners could add much to the score.
McFadyean and Wheeldon took another wicket each but Swarkestone ended their innings with three overs to spare and with a tough target for Sandiacre to chase.
That task was made even harder when Chesney Hughes was out for nought in the first over, but James Chapman (43) and John Trueman (34) took hold and seemed to be making good progress before both fell in quick succession to the bowling of Thomas Knight (4-24).
Hughes proved a menace with the ball too as he took three wickets for 29, only Oliver Uffindall (25 not out) showing much resistance as Sandiacre collapsed from 83-3 to 139 all out and Swarkestone’s victory was assured.
l Sunday saw better luck for Sandiacre as they disposed of Rolls Royce Leisure in Group Three of the National Club Championship.
Jono Clare and Dan Wheeldon took three wickets each as Royce were all out for 171, before Sandiacre laboured past their target for the loss of six wickets, Daniel Tucker top scoring with 36.
The seconds had to make do with a losing draw at Tutbury.
Gareth Goodall (4-67) and Andrew Marlow (3-41) shared the wickets as Tutbury made 241-7 from their 46 allotted overs, Sam Wesston’s 70 the highlight of the innings.
Sandiacre lost eight wickets in reply but held on for a share of the points.
Ben Ruhrmund’s 67 was key, as was Goodall’s 34 lower down the order as they ended on 213-8 - though Sandiacre were deducted a point for a slow over rate.
It was a winning draw for the thirds at Denby, but only just.
Sandiacre’s 156-8 was largely due to Chris Attwood (75) and John Murfin (48), with no other bowlers making double figures.
Denby ended up falling just short of victory as they had only eight runs to find before time ran out with them at 148-7, Richard Greenhalgh scoring 51 for Denby and Paul Standring taking three wickets for the visitors.