DULWICH 209-7 (50) lost to PURLEY 214-6 (49.5) by 4 wickets
Dulwich visited Purley in their final match of the season in Division 2 of the Ryman Surrey Championship, needing three points to ensure safety, while their opponents had to win. Both clubs achieved their goals, in a tense match that was not decided until the penultimate ball.
Dulwich were put in to bat on a damp pitch which had been left uncovered overnight, but found the conditions nowhere near as bad as they might have feared. Their aim was to score 200 runs to obtain three batting points and ensure their survival in the event of a Cheam victory over Esher. They moved steadily towards this target throughout the innings. They were led by a fine innings of 86 off 122 balls by Ed Stolle, his third half century of the season and the best score by a Dulwich player this year. He was well supported by Sam Tennant, who made 12 in a stand of 35 for the first wicket, Frankie Brown, with 26 out of 71 for the second, and Zakir Rostami, who went on to make 20 after adding 29 with Stolle for the third. The rest of the innings was dominated by keeper Ed Hopkins, who fell in the last over having made 44 off 41 balls. Dulwich reached their 200 target in the 49th over and closed on 209-7 after 50.
The Purley openers got off to a flyer as Jon Lodwick went for 29 in his first three overs, mostly edged through or slashed over the slips. But he and Naeem Iqbal removed both openers to reduce Purley to 36-2 after six overs. The third wicket pair added 50, but a wicket for Salaar Waqar and two for Stuart Ferguson pegged them back to 114-5 in the 26th over. The match hung in the balance, but Nathan Harris then joined skipper James Scott in a stand of 80 for the sixth wicket. Tight bowling by Brown, who bowled his ten overs straight through for just 27 runs, pushed them behind the required rate. But with his spell finished, and with wickets in hand, they were able to hit out in the last five overs, despite losing Scott, bowled by Alex Gledhill for 48, and victory was achieved with one ball to spare.
Purley’s victory lifted them to seventh, while Dulwich picked up four points, three for batting and one for bowling, leaving them in eighth position. They finished one point ahead of Cheam who were relegated despite winning their last two matches. Dulwich thus survived to look forward to another season in Division 2 next year.