With keeper/ batsman Neil Colegate drafted into the first XI at the eleventh hour, Dartington & Totnes second XI took to the field with 10 men against high flying Brixham on Saturday. Brixham elected to bat on a good track at Foxhole. Brixham racked up a huge total as D&T’s bowlers toiled in the heat. They were aided by over 60 extras which included 48 wides. Amazingly Brixham later bowled 44 wides in the D&T innings.
Heath, who went on to make 92 was dropped three times, firstly off Finlay Porter’s first delivery, following which Brixham got off to a flying start. When Porter had the other opener caught by Jina at gully this brought Brixham’s former Devon player, Andy Pugh, to the crease. He quickly showed his class despatching any slightly loose delivery to the boundary. Despite their best efforts D&T’s bowlers were unable to get a breakthrough as Pugh and Heath, with a generous supply of extras, kept the scoreboard moving at around 6 runs per over. They sailed past the 200 mark and it seemed that Pugh was likely to run riot in the last 10 overs. However, Porter returned for his second spell and Pugh bashed him high towards long -on where Simon Heyes appeared to have no chance of catching the ball. Heyes had other ideas and leaped to catch the ball one-handed and managed to keep hold of it after hitting the ground. It was an absolutely sensational catch and his disbelieving teammates rushed towards him with congratulations.
Heath opened up more following Pugh’s departure, but the rest of Brixham’s batsmen were not in the same class. Porter took a remarkable catch to dismiss Dallow for 22. Dallow top-edged the ball high in the air and Porter appeared to lose sight of it only to take a fine one-handed catch. Skipper Gavin Colegate took off his wicketkeeping pads and brought himself on to bowl taking a couple of wickets including that of a tired Heath, neatly stumped by Jon Perkin. Jina came back on and picked up a couple of wickets with a variety of deliveries including spin and slow stuff, as D&T finally enjoyed a bit of success. Josh Bowhay fielded impressively for D&T running around like a greyhound despite the heat.
D&T had been bowled out for 31 in the previous meeting between the clubs earlier in the season and at 8 for 4 it seemed they would not even manage 31. Brixham opened the bowling with Dallow who had caused mayhem in the previous game. Although coming off a short run Dallow hurled the ball down just short of a length and obtained prodigious lift. Opener Jon Perkin was struck on the body three times in Dallow’s first over whilst Brixham had three fielders lined up at silly mid-on waiting for a catch. Dallow caught and bowled Perkin for 4 but his opening partner, Blundell, caused more damage bowling Matt Haw and Gavin and Scott Colegate for ducks. Blundell was obtaining some vicious late swing and sent down some unplayable deliveries.
Jina and Heyes consolidated with Jina looking particularly impressive. They got a big cheer as the score went past 31. Jina departed for 17 and when Heyes went soon after for 12 D&T were 73 for 6. Joe Burgess and Mick Rusling put on 60 on for the seventh wicket, picking up 2 batting points on the way. Burgess batted beautifully and was the major aggressor, striking 6 boundaries. Blundell came back on to bowl but wasn’t causing any problems until Rusling (12) missed a high fast full toss which came down to nick the bails. Surely a no ball? The umpires thought differently and Porter was the last man in as D&T were now down to 9 batsmen. Porter made batting look easy and he and Burgess were within 2 runs of a further bonus point when Porter was bowled for 10.