A poor batting display and some slack fielding led to Dartington and Totnes First Eleven crashing to a surprise defeat against bottom of the table Plympton Seconds at Foxhole on Saturday.
Batting first after losing the toss, D&T were quickly in trouble when Harry Baxendale was caught behind by Chris Dawe off Jonty Wallaker without scoring. Willy Wyatt quickly followed when he was caught also without troubling the scorer to leave D&T struggling at 20-2.
Surviving opener James Howrihane fell with the score on 36 when he was caught and bowled by Wallaker for 17. Chris Cook, returning after two weeks out, and Matt Sevior added 15 runs for the fourth wicket before Cook pulled a Josiah Caunter long hop to Wallaker at square leg for 5.
Sevior followed before another run was scored, caught off the bowling of Felicity Leydon-Davies for 7. D&T had lost half their wickets for only 51 runs, setting a challenge for the lower order batsmen to build a defendable total.
Josh Orrall and Andy Bligh added 21 for the sixth wicket before Bligh was undone by a sharp piece of wicket-keeping and was stumped for 9 to become Leydon-Davies’ second wicket. Orrall and Ben Hartridge forged the largest partnership of the innings putting on 30 before Orrall was LBW to Plympton skipper Jason Degg for a steady and much-needed 25.
Skipper Harold Stevenson was the third duck of the innings, caught at slip off Wallaker. Hartridge fell five balls later when he was LBW to Degg for 17 to leave D&T 108 for 9. Last wicket pair of Alex Winch and Tyler Walton added 20 runs in 8 overs to gain an extra batting point before Winch edged Degg to first slip for 6 leaving Walton unbeaten on 7.
Extras were the highest scorer with 35 in an innings which fell far short of one to set the bowlers an easily defendable target. D&T knew that they would have to bowl well and be sharp in the field to give themselves any chance of winning. An early wicket would be essential and Andy Bligh struck in the third over when he held onto a one-handed caught and bowled chance to dismiss Jason Degg for 7.
Another wicket would have put pressure on the Plympton batsmen but dropped catches and poor fielding enabled Plympton to move to 51 before the second wicket fell with Rob Walker run out by Josh Orrall for 17.
Harry Kandampully then gloved a Baxendale delivery to Cook at first slip for 9 with the score on 63. Opener Felicity Leydon-Davies was still going strong but was next out when the same combination combined to dismiss her for 27 leaving the visitors on 82-4.
Charles O’Higgins and Wallaker brought up the 100 before O’Higgins was caught in the deep by Howrihane to give Baxendale his third wicket. Chris Dawe became the first of Cook’s two wickets, bowled by a sharp turner for 5 with Plympton needing 29 to win. The seventh wicket however put on 17 runs before Josiah Caunter was caught and bowled by Cook for 11.
With only one run needed, Ben Phillips fell for 4, bowled by Howrihane but Wallaker hit the winning boundary in his unbeaten 17, leaving D&T beaten by two wickets.
It had been a poor batting and fielding performance by the home side who will need to win their next two games if the rest of the season is not spent looking nervously at the relegation places in a tight league.