Topcroft lose in final over

Topcroft will be extremely disappointed to have not beaten Norwich A after posting 252, and they travel to Saxlingham next for an eagerly-anticipated local derby, looking to return to winning ways.

Topcroft entertained Norwich A looking to build on their excellent recent form in a match sponsored by Hickman Supplies.

Hancock lost the toss and the hosts were asked to bat on a green-tinged wicket. The opening pair of Hancock and M Goodfellow were treated to a fly-by from the Red Arrows as they entered the field of play. But, despite this, the Topcroft innings failed to get off to a flying start when Goodfellow edged behind off the bowling of Tom Pearce with the score on two.

Baldwin joined his skipper at the crease and the pair steadied the innings and added 85 for the two before Baldwin (36) got a leading edge off Stacey, who gratefully took the return catch.

Hancock (48) narrowly missed out on another half-century for the second week running when he was trapped in front of the wicket by Stacey. And when Davey departed after being out to a sharp catch by Chris Sutton off the occasional spin bowling of Norfolk seamer Aaron Watson, the hosts’ innings was in the balance on 106-4.

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David Reeder was the next man in, making his first appearance of the season for the first team. With James Goodfellow he soon set about the attack and some lusty hitting from Goodfellow in particular saw the Topcroft innings pass the 200 mark.

Reeder (34) was caught by Watson off the bowling of Pearce with a double-Nelson on the scoreboard. Rostron joined Goodfellow and the pair looked to maximise the target for the visitors.

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Goodfellow was batting beautifully, and moving into the final over he required five runs to reach his maiden century. But a slip meant only a single could be taken off the first ball of the over and Rostron’s big-hitting – with 13 off the remaining five balls – did not allow Goodfellow another chance and he ended with a fine effort of 96 not out as Topcroft’s innings finished on an impressive 252-5.

Topcroft’s opening bowling attack of I Todd and Rostron were not as effective as they have been in recent weeks and the openers comfortably brought up the 50 partnership in the 11th over.

The introduction of Baldwin into the attack broke this partnership, with the dismissal of Jessup (20) who edged to Hancock behind the stumps with the score on 51. Grellier (31) was run out and then Chris Sutton went in the same manner as Jessup.

The big-hitting Stacey joined Watson and the pair carefully went about rebuilding the innings to leave the result in the balance at the drinks break with the score on 108-3.

The two batsmen then hit the accelerator and Topcroft were relieved when Stacey found the safe hands of Reeder in the deep off the bowling of D Todd.

Watson (47), who had been fortunate to survive an appeal for a caught behind when on six, had started to take the attack to the bowlers when a mix-up with Vaughan led to his run-out after a good throw from I Todd.

The game continued to see-saw and a third run-out after some sensational work from Windridge left Norwich A on 187-6, with 12 overs remaining.

A fine partnership of 40 for the seventh wicket between Mandhu and Sexton swung the game back into the visitors’ favour. Windridge caught Mandhu (30) off D Todd and then the 15-year-old claimed Topcroft’s fourth run-out of the innings to leave Norwich on 228-8.

When Todd trapped Rashid lbw with the score on 234, Topcroft sensed victory. However, a match-winning partnership of 20 between Sexton and Herwin saw the win claimed in the final over.

Hickman Supplies MoM: James Goodfellow for his 96 not out.

Scoreboard in round-up below.

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