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Droitwich held after Hagley fight back
10:20am Monday 23rd July 2012 in Local
DROITWICH Spa were held by Hagley to a thrilling tie in the Worcestershire League Division One at St Peters fields.
Victory for the home side seemed certain with just ten runs needed from the final four overs with four wickets left.
However, the return of Amjad Ali into the bowling attack turned the game dramatically towards the visitors as he took the crucial wicket of Ian Cottrill for 50 and followed it up by bowling Adam Crowle.
With S Khan claiming his fifth wicket by having Mike Rogers caught behind, Spa suddenly needed eight runs with one wicket left.
Matt Biggs looked to have steered Spa home, but an inswinging yorker from Craig Bray bowled Karl Goddard with the scores level and Droitwich had to settle for 13 points.
Earlier in the innings, Spa looked to be coasting to victory as openers Martyn Davies and Stuart Bryan put on 61 stylish runs for the first wicket.
Hagley then introduced the spin of Bernard Erasmus and Khan and they both found sharp turn on a drying wicket and runs started to dry up.
Davies ran himself out for 33 and Jerome Conner and Max Young quickly fell to spinning deliveries.
Bryan went for 47 when he top edged a sweep, but Ian Cottrill was batting beautifully, but with little support as the inning folded tamely.
Hagley's innings started with an early wicket apiece for Mike Rogers and Karl Goddard, but the middle order dug in with Ali (34) and Russell Andrews (36) being the pick as they fought their way to 171.
The Spa bowling was dominated by the left arm spin of Davies who claimed his first wickets of the season to finish with 6-62.
He was well-supported by a controlled display of swing bowling from Adam Crowle, who was unlucky to only pick up one wicket in a marathon 17th over spell. Droitwich will be looking to move further up the table next week, when they visit relegation threatened Redditch in the league on Saturday (1.30pm start).
In Division Three, Chaddesley Corbett earned a share of the spoils as they held Wyre Forest rivals Cookley to a draw.
David Perry took four wickets and Nathan Glass three as Corbett’s bowlers restricted Cookley to 213 all out.
After a poor start, the third wicket partnership of Grant Bishop (53) and Rob Hirons (47) put on a stand of 87. Once they were dismissed, Matthew Yardley (18no) guided them to 162-7.
Avoncroft leapt to the top of Division Four with an 180 run hammering of Hanley Castle and Upton on Saturday.
Big-hitting David James was in inspirational form as he struck 126 in a devastating innings which included 14 sizes and six fours.
Matt (34), Craig Hughes (78) and Sam Hughes (55no) also made valuable contributions with the bat as Croft recorded a formidable 317-4 dec in 42 overs.
Ian Carpenter then took 5-37 as Castle were toppled for 137 in 46 overs.
Saturday fixtures - Worcestershire County Cricket League Division One 1st XI: Droitwich v Coombs Wood.
Division One 2nd XI: Droitwich v Belbroughton.
Division Three 1st XI: Himbleton v Chaddesley Corbett.
Division Three 2nd XI: Chaddesley Corbett v Himbleton.
Division Four 1st XI: Ross on Wye v Bromsgrove; Avoncroft v Old Vigornians.
Division Four 2nd XI: Bromsgrove v Avoncroft.
Division Five 1st XI: Stourbridge v Barnt Green.
Division Six: Cutnall Green v Stone.
Division Eight: Harborne v Droitwich Spa.
Division Nine: Chaddesley Corbett v Bredon. All matches 1.30pm start.