By CONRAD SUTCLIFFE
EXMOUTH are aiming to end a long wait for a win over their nearest rivals when they visit Budleigh Salterton in a Premier East game on Saturday.
Ottermouth is not the happiest of hunting grounds for Exmouth, who have not won there since 1998.
Budleigh totalled 170 for five in their 46 overs, Aussie run-machine Mike Ready stroking 69. Richard Parker (53) led Exmouth to a four-wicket win.
Exmouth may not have won on the Ottermouth for 22 years, but have had some near misses.
Nearest miss of them all was the May 2005 meeting when Nick Folland and David Court both hit half-centuries for Exmouth in a total of 211 for five. Budleigh collapsed to 80 for nine in reply, but last pair Ian Bishop and Lewis Baker batted out for a draw at 155 for nine.
Exmouth (230-7) were only two wickets away from beating Budleigh (188-8) in the 2011 derby at Ottermouth.
EXMOUTH played two mix-and-match T20 games among club members to warm-up for their league curtain raiser at Budleigh Salterton on Saturday.
Game one went to Exmouth B, who chased down 121 to win with six wickets in hand. Tim Piper hit 47 for the A team and Finlay Marks clattered 46 for the B Team
Game two was a nail-biter that went down to the final few balls before Team B emerged triumphant by five runs.
Eddie Rudolph and Ryan Schaufler both retired with half-centuries in the book in Team B’s total of 164.
Team A needed 11 to win with two overs to go when Andrew Buzza had to retire on 50 and fell short of the target on 159 for six.
Exmouth are away to Budleigh Salterton this Saturday in a Premier East game.
BUDLEIGH Salterton, like Exmouth, have warmed-up by playing intra-club matches and are happy with the results.
“Everyone has had a bat, had a bowl and done some fielding and generally had a run-round,” said former captain and coaching consultant Joel Murphy.
Budleigh have had no significant departures during the winter, but have re-acquired a couple of familiar faces.
The Parkin brothers – batter Harry and all-rounder Charlie – have reappeared at training and come into the selection frame, either for the game against Exmouth or the 2ndXI match-up with Topsham St James.