Doctor Block’s retirement from village cricket has left Pirton a shell of their former selves. Not that it would have mattered in this fixture. Lilley romped home to an easy eight wicket win and totally outclassed the home side in all areas.
Ashby’s bad run of tosses continued and Pirton amazingly, given their previous draw specialist status, chose to bat. Lilley found it hard going early on, with Ashby tight at one end but leaking runs at the other. Young Taz took the new ball on his birthday, but nerves got the better of him as wides and four balls reigned in his seven over spell for 32 runs. The first wicket ‘fell’ when opener Bright pulled his calf muscle and had to retire hurt. Impressive Gareth Tomkins (2-38) then made inroads, taking two wickets in quick succession before a quick piece of thinking by returning ‘keeper Peter Rogers saw Gill stumped, caught standing on parade outside his crease. Ashby (2-27) then returned to pick up two wickets and tighten the noose around Pirton’s neck, leaving them on 169-5 from their session.
Mik Carman declared himself unwell during the interval, so James Ashby went out to open with Peter Rogers, who hasn’t picked up a bat for nearly a year. By the time Ashby was caught for 35, having hit 2 fours and 2 sixes, Lilley were 90-1 (the highest opening partnership of the year thus far) and well on the path to victory. In form Brad Tomkins then put on 39 for the second wicket before Rogers fell for an excellent 52, including nine fours. Rob Hoar then blazed 33 in double quick time, including five fours and he and Tomkins guided Lilley to an impressive eight wicket win with six overs to spare.