Smith makes 81 in promotion push

Gillingham (215 for five) took another step towards promotion from Norfolk League Division Eight with a hard-fought win at Hingham A (172) on Saturday.

Having travelled with just nine men, Gillingham elected to bat first and made a solid start, Patrick (11) and Aldridge (27) adding 53 for the first wicket before both departing in quick succession.

Liam Smith and Hoare kept the scoreboard moving, adding 50 in 10 overs before Hoare was bowled by Fenton for 26.

With 15 overs remaining the Gillingham total stood at 117 for three but it soon started to grow as Smith, having reached a patient half-century, started to cut loose with a series of boundaries.

Vickers dismissal brought Wentworth (19no) to the crease, and his rapid running ensured Smith enjoyed the majority of the strike.

The pair added 80 runs in quick time before Smith was eventually dismissed in the 43rd over having made an excellent 81, propelling the total to 215 for five.

The Hingham reply began cautiously with opening bowlers Matt Smith and Cockings looking threatening.

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Cockings made the breakthrough in the eighth over, yorking Fenton, before claiming three further wickets in an excellent spell. Alongside two wickets for Smith, it reduced Hingham to 73 for six after 24 overs.

Hoare then claimed the seventh wicket, bringing Ducker and Gorden together, already requiring over seven runs an over. Ducker immediately took the attack to Gillingham, striking the ball cleanly and exploiting the gaps in the field to keep Hingham in the game, reaching a brisk 50.

As the game entered the final 10 overs, tight bowling from Liam Smith and Aldridge pushed the required rate up further, eventually leading to the crucial wicket of Ducker, bowled by Smith for 66.

Excellent work from Wentworth then resulted in the run-out of Gorden (26) before a sharp stumping from Patrick ending the innings, Hingham dismissed for 175 to seal a 40-run victory.

ACSYS Laser Systems man of the match: Liam Smith

Gillingham: B Patrick b Juby 11, J Aldridge c b Juby 27, L Smith st b Dodman 81, T Hoare b Fenton 26, B Vickers c Gorden 5, G Wentworth not out 19, J Cockings not out 0, extras 46. Total (5 wkts) 215. Bowling: J Scent 12-1-45-0, C Juby 12-1-33-2, D Fenton 11-1-36-1, S Gorden 7-0-49-1, P Dodman 3-0-26-1.

Hingham A: D Fenton Bowled b Cockings 12, C Juby b Cockings 12, C Edwards b M Smith 9, K Chilleystone b Cockings 5, J Scent b M Smith 0, D Johnson c Aldridge b Cockings 14, P Dodman b T Hoare 7, J Ducker b L Smith 66, S Gorden run out (Wentworth) 26, J Baldwin st b L Smith 0, O Thomas not out 0, extras 24. Total 175. Bowling: M Smith 12-0-44-2, J Cockings 12-4-28-4, T Hoare 3-0-21-1, J Aldridge 9-1-47-0, B Vickers 2-0-9-0, L Smith 4.2-0-20-2.