The Dartington and Totnes First Eleven juggernaut continued to roll on with the crushing 10 wicket defeat of second placed Ashburton at a sunny Foxhole.
D&T Skipper Harry Baxendale won the toss on a wicket, which given the large amounts of rain during the week was damp. A tight opening spell by the D&T opening bowlers led to a frustrated Lloyd White skiing a Phil Snyman delivery to Alex Hartridge for 4. Shortly afterwards, Hartridge had other opener Jake Pascoe caught by keeper Alex Winch for 3.
Hartridge soon took a second wicket, Dan Coles caught at second slip by Jono Colegate, to leave the visitors struggling on 24-3. Things got worse for the visitors when skipper Baxendale brought himself onto bowl and had Arun Karthick plumb LBW for 1.
Ashburton captain Ashley Berry and new man Chris Pascoe set about rebuilding the Ashes’ innings and together the pair added a watchful 34 runs. The pair were just beginning to frustrate the D&T bowlers, with numerous chances not falling to hand, when Berry could only top edge a sweep off Baxendale to Tyler Walton to fall for 23.
Jono Colegate was then introduced into the attack and preceded to take the last 5 wickets to fall. He began by bowling Matt Churchil for 1. Pascoe, who had shown patience on a testing wicket then edged a Colegate delivery to Chris Cook at first slip to fall for 28 and the bowler had two wickets in two balls when he bowled James Rush for a golden duck.
Colegate then wrapped up the innings in his next over when he bowled Will Coon and then George Marshall, the latter completing Colegate’s five-wicket haul. The visitors had been bowled out for 83 and in truth were indebted to Berry and Pascoe for even getting that many. It had been another impressive bowling performance led by Colegate who finished with the impressive figures of 5/19 from his 9 overs.
Despite only chasing a low total, the D&T opening pair of Cook and Snyman knew that the tough wicket would require complete application to ensure they did not give their wickets away.
Ashburton knew an early wicket was what they needed if they were to have any chance of winning. However, this did not come as the ball beat the bat on numerous occasions and inside edges missed the stumps. The pair punished any loose deliveries with Cook striking a big six over midwicket to take D&T towards victory.
Unlike previous weeks when D&T have lost wickets with victory in sight, Cook and Snyman continued to apply themselves and took the home side to a 10-wicket victory with 20 overs to spare, Cook finishing on 28 and Snyman on 35.
It had been a superb all-round performance, continuing D&T’s unbeaten start to the season and extending their lead at the top of the C-Division West to 33 points. The bowlers, led by Colegate set up the platform for Cook and Snyman to take D&T to a comfortable victory.
Speaking after the game, Baxendale was in buoyant mood saying ‘It was a game of two halves and we won both of them. While it wasn’t an easy wicket to bat on, our openers showed how with patience and application, runs could be scored on it. On Saturday, we have another home game against our local rivals, Stoke Gabriel and hope we can continue our winning run.’