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Sat 3rd August - 1st XI v Dorking

DORKING 105 (38.2) lost to DULWICH 109-5 (29.5) by 5 wickets

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Dulwich kept their promotion hopes alive in Division 2 of the AJ Fordham Surrey Championship with a five wicket victory over Dorking.

Dulwich came to Dorking lacking five members of last week’s side and with three players making their first team debuts. The first of these, Sahir Hussain, was soon in action, opening the bowling in company with acting skipper Jon Lodwick. Lodwick once again bowled superbly, conceding just one scoring shot in his first five overs. Hussain gave him good support, and got the vital breakthrough in his fourth over by having prolific opener Bradley Erasmus caught behind by the second newcomer Lachlan Skinner. Erasmus, who had made 83 in the first match between the sides, had been tied down to such an extent that he had scored just four runs off 24 balls.

With their talisman gone the Dorking batsmen were under sustained pressure, but had advanced the score to 28 in the 14th over when a remarkable running one handed catch above his head by Lodwick gave Hussain his second wicket, and his third followed to another good catch by Robbie Catling four balls later. Elliot Miles chipped in with a wicket in his first over and Hussain got his fourth in the following over to leave Dorking reeling on 39-5. Charlie Kenway and skipper Toby Blood had lifted the score to 60 when Blood slammed a ball from Miles hard into Sam Ellison’s midriff at silly point and was amazed to see him hold onto the catch. Two more wickets for Miles and one for fellow slow left armer Alex Gledhill reduced Dorking to 65-9 after 25 overs.

Young keeper William Edwards now joined Tim Brewster and the pair batted with confidence against the spinners, putting together the highest partnership of the innings. Hussain was recalled to try and break the stand, but it was Miles who got the final wicket when Edwards ran down the pitch and was stumped. The last wicket pair had added 40 in 14 overs to take the score to 105. Miles finished with 5-28 off 11.2 overs, Hussain 4-31 off 12, and Gledhill 1-22 off 7.

With both their regular openers unavailable this week, Dulwich promoted the third newcomer, 14 year old Veer Patel, to open the batting with Ed Towner. And the youngster was not overawed by the experience as he made the early running, putting away anything loose to make 22 of the first 24 runs. But Towner’s dismissal, lbw to Kieron Corbett, was followed three balls later by that of Ellison to make it 28-2 after nine overs. Matt Marfani joined Patel, and together they added 30 in six overs for the third wicket. Erasmus joined the attack and had Marfani caught behind after making 22 off just 18 balls.

Patel and Miles then took the score to 81 when Patel was caught by Erasmus off Corbett for 40, after facing 64 balls with a maturity that belied his youth. Miles was bowled by Erasmus two runs later to bring together Skinner and Catling. The pair batted circumspectly until Blood brought himself on and Skinner, who had faced 23 balls without scoring, smashed the first five balls of his second over for ten runs to win the match. Corbett and Erasmus had done the bulk of the bowling to finish with 3-26 and 2-19 respectively, but none of the other bowlers had posed any real threat.

Dulwich climb one place to fourth, and are now only eight points short of second place. Next week the competition reverts to fifty overs a side, when Dulwich visit Sanderstead who are currently marooned at the foot of the table.

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