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Sat 22nd June - 1st XI v Valley End

VALLEY END 208-6 (49) beat DULWICH 204 (52.3) by 4 wickets

Dulwich twice came back from precarious positions in their AJ Sports Surrey Championship Division 1 match at Valley End, but were unable to close out victory and went down to defeat by four wickets.

Dulwich elected to bat but ran into immediate difficulty when the Valley End overseas player Josh Dodd removed Harrison Perry in his second over and skipper Ollie Steele and the prolific Apoorv Wankhade in his third, both without scoring. Dulwich were thus 21-3 after five overs. James Schofield and Sam Seecharan rebuilt the innings, adding 93 for the fourth wicket in 18 overs before Seecharan was bowled for 51, off 64 balls. Opener Schofield was next to go with the score on 143, having battled for 96 balls for 65, to give Dodd his fourth wicket. The bowlers then worked their way through the rest of the order, with only Harvey Booth, with 24 off 31, making a significant contribution. Dulwich were all out for 204 off 52.3 overs, with Dodd finishing with 5-51 off 14.

Dodd now opened the batting in company with Josh Jayasingh. Seven of the Dulwich wickets had fallen to pace, but a shoulder injury to Booth meant that Dulwich had to rely mainly on spin. The spinners created several chances, but the fielders were unable to hold on as the openers put on 101 in 18 overs for the first wicket. It was slow left armer Felix Watson-Smyth who made the breakthrough, removing Jayasingh, who had played a solid supporting role with 31 off 55 balls. He followed up three balls later with the wicket of Dodd, who had made 65 off 60. Leg spinner Ahmed Khan then took a wicket in each of his next two overs, either side of the tea interval. Valley End had gone from 101 without loss to 103-4. The two spinners continued in tandem for most of the rest of the innings. They kept a tight rein on the scoring and each took another wicket, but with no time pressure the batsmen were able to advance mainly in ones and twos until a late flurry when the target was in sight. Watson-Smyth finished with 3-81 off 19 overs, while Khan had 3-64 off 18.

Dulwich took just four points from this game but remain in third place. Next week they have a home fixture against Beddington, who have been climbing the table and are now just eight points behind in fourth place.



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