Cleeve cruise to comfortable three-wicket victory

PUBLISHED: 10:53 18 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:53 18 July 2018

Cleeve 2nd XI Andrew Martin and John Bluett.

Cleeve 2nd XI Andrew Martin and John Bluett.

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Cleeve recorded a comfortable three-wicket victory away at Old Down to remain in third position.

Old Down 171

Cleeve 173-7

Another hot sunny day welcomed Cleeve, who gave a fine performance in the field to bowl out Old Down for 171.

Despite a measured 53 from Old Down skipper Gregory Welsh, Lewin rang constant bowling changes, using eight in all, with wickets for opener Mitch Want (1-23), off-spinner James Cole (1-42), Nikhil Bhajipale (2-25) and Sam Wiliams (1-14).

The pick, however, was Jack Wilkins with 4-25, as Old Down were all out in the 38th over for 173.

A nervous batting reply from Cleeve resulted in Want being bowled for eight after despatching two balls to the boundary leaving Cleeve on a comfortable 50-1 at tea.

Lewin was soon bowled for 15, Williams caught out for 21 followed by single figures for Cole and Phil Gostlin.

This brought all-rounders Bhajipale and Connor Hance to the crease to settle the mood down with some solid batting, before Bhajipale was caught for 30 and Hance going for 24.

This left Archie Ferris and Joe Hance to drag Cleeve over the line with 24 and 26 not outs respectively to win by three wickets in the 33rd over.

This was Cleeve’s fourth straight win but still leaves them third, just 21 points behind second-placed Bath.

On Saturday, Cleeve entertain table-topping Lodway, who stumbled last week with a loss to Long Ashton.

Cleeve 2nd XI 213-5

Bristol Aces 217-5

Cleeve skipper George Parsons welcomed table-topping Aces to the George V Playing Fields, electing to make first use of the home strip on winning the toss.

Father and son combo, Charlie and Will Grubb were charged with opening the Cleeve account. Both played well with Grubb junior outscoring dad, both perishing for 26 and 33 respectively.

Dan Dixon was bowled for 17, the skipper run out for three before veteran Kelston Crew, back from injury, was caught for 10.

All-rounders Andrew Martin and John Bluet came to together and pushed the score along with a 100 partnership. Bluett was particularly brutal ending on 57 not out comprising 10 fours and one six with Martin ending on 43 not out.

In reply, despite ringing the bowling changes, Cleeve were unable to string together the control required allowing Aces opener Tom Mathew to end on 110 not out.

Wickets were sparingly shared by youngster Alex Grubb (1-22), Bluett (1-43), Dixon (1-36) and Crew (1-34).

Andrew Martin deserves a mention for a controlled spell of six overs for 21 runs, but sadly no wickets. Old Down running out winners by five wickets in the 33rd over.

On Saturday, Cleeve travel to local rivals Nailsea in a bid for a win that has eluded the side in recent weeks. Cleeve now lie seventh in the table with Nailsea currently propping up the table.

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