West Hallam continued their domination of Division Three with another victory on Saturday, this time against Derby Congs at Cock Orchard.
Batting first, Hallam were bowled out for 216. After a strong start with Tom Brandrick (34), Tim Hampton-Matehe (42) and Matt Tatler (41) all making starts the middle order faltered and only Martin Brandrick (49*) made it into double figures.
On a very good wicket Congs would have been confident of chasing down the total, however opening bowlers James Lockhart and Peter Hort had other ideas as Congs were bundled out for just 87.
Lockhart proved the main destroyer, taking a career best 7 for 48 from 12.2 overs and Hort took 3 for 31 from 13 as Hallam secured 27 points.
On Sunday, and for the fourth time this season Hallam faced Derby Congs, this time in the Bayley Cup.
Batting first, Hallam’s innings was dominated by a superb unbeaten 106 by Hampton-Matehe, his first century on English soil. He was well supported by the other batsmen as Hallam posted a challenging 237 -3.
With the previous day still fresh in their minds the Congs batting line up took an all-out attack approach.
This proved costly as John Trueman (3-50) and Lee Barrow (4-22) cashed in with Lockhart (1-9), Carl Cruz (1-29) and Brandrick (1-29) all taking one a piece.
On Saturday, the 2nd XI faced a tough challenge as they came up against a very strong Belper Meadows side, who are proving difficult to beat after dropping down four leagues.
Meadows amassed 243 for 3 batting first, however had Hallam held on to their catches this may have been different.
In reply, Hallam had to ensure they avoided defeat to prevent them losing ground on the league leaders and they closed the innings on 143 for 6 with captain Jeff Lockhart and Mark Hill seeing the innings out.
On Sunday the 2nd XI travelled to Belper Meadows, this time in the Wright Cup.
Meadows again batted first and in similar fashion to the previous day scored 241-4 front heir 45 overs.
With the result being simply win or lose Hallam were going to have to chase the total down and they came reasonably close as they closed the innings on 215 for 7.
Thomas Lockhart (47), Adam Wainman (42), Mark Hill (33*) and Kristian Tingle (33*) all made valuable contributions.
Shipley Hall earned an honourable draw as they visited Alrewas on Saturday.
Winning the toss and opting to bat first, Alrewas lost their first three wickets for 37, two of them for Matt Murfin and the other to James Parkin, but after that Tom Chapman enjoyed a superb innings of 80 and was well supported by Josh Jones who hit a sound 57 before being lbw to Murfin.
Ryan North then took 4 for 78 in a 13-over spell as the later batsmen went for runs and Alrewas reached 217 all out.
When Shipley batted, Mark Starr and Ryan Buckley made 52 for the first wicket but by the time the score read 60 both were back in the pavilion.
It was then, however, that Martinus Gouws took control and with James Cokayne took the score to 129.
Cokayne was content to play a minor role while Gouws hit ten fours and a six in his innings of 78.
It was then that the game swung in Alrewas’ favour as Shipley limped to 175-9 and were in danger of losing the match, but a stubborn innings from Murfin helped the cause and with Parkin holding his end up in the last over, Shipley saved the day.