Bucks’ run chase falls agonisingly short at Newton

Peak Sports D&C Division One

Newton 1st XI 212-7, Buxton 1st XI 202-6

TEN runs were all that separated the sides on Saturday as Buxton 1st XI travelled to Newton in their debut match in the Peak Sports Derbyshire and Cheshire Cricket League Division One.

Chasing 212 to win, Buxton were cruising at 91-0 thanks to 58 from Luke Smith, but with 23 overs to go they slumped to 164-6, eventually finishing on 202-6 off their 45 overs.

Earlier, Matthew Poole had taken 6-73 as the Bucks restricted Newton to a manageable target on a hard April wicket.

Having lost the toss, skipper Mark Hill and Matthew Poole were exceptional with the new ball for the visitors, but after Poole’s initial two-wicket burst which saw Newton 15-2, Buxton had to wait 26 overs for another breakthrough, as the resolute Mark Barnard (109) dominated the hosts’ innings.

He was very strong straight off the wicket and looked in little trouble against the change bowling of Nick Smith and Scott Mackenzie. He brought up a fine century, before holing out to Hill off the returning Poole.

The innings turned once again in the Bucks’ favour. Amrit Singh bowled a superb spell of ten overs, conceding only 34 runs and picking up a solitary wicket.

But it was Poole who was the star of the show, taking four more scalps as Newton limped to 212-7 after 45 overs.

The youthful partnership of Luke Smith and Ben Marsden made a bright start and were excellent at rotating the strike, putting away the bad balls.

Scoring at a decent rate, they were unfortunate not to record a century opening stand, as Smith dragged on to his stumps for 58, then Marsden was run out soon after for 40.

Steve Knighton (29) and Amrit Singh (17) threatened, but nobody could make the telling score that would have taken Buxton over the line, as their innings featured two more run outs.

Veterans Bob Marsden (17 not out) and Nick Smith (21 not out) tried to stage a recovery, but it was a case of too little too late for the visitors. Pottage bowled unchanged from one end all afternoon, finishing with figures of 3-73 from 22 overs.

The Bucks picked up eight points from this game and now look forward to the visit of Broadbottom to The Park on Saturday.