STEVE BIRLEY REPORTING
BRADNINCH Ladies XI won their first hard-ball game in Devon Women’s League Division Two when Plymouth were defeated by nine wickets at Mount Wise.
After losing the toss and having her opposite number opt to bat first, Bradninch captain Meg Acton gave the new ball duties to Abby Hayes and Kirsty Trude.
Home openers Ann Ruddock and Jemima Johnson made steady progress and, after four overs from Hayes and three from Trude, captain Acton made her first change, introducing Heather Stanbury as first change to bowl the eighth over, with Acton becoming the second change at the other end.
The break through came off the final ball of Stanbury’s second over, having Ruddock caught by Anna Brown with the home opener out for a 35-ball nine and it meant, 10 overs into their innings, Plymouth were 39-1.
In the very next over, indeed, four deliveries after the first wicket fell, a second was taken as Acton clean bowled Candy Capeling for a second ball duck.
The third bowling change saw Louisa Squire introduced to send down the 16th over, at the start of which Plymouth were 65-2.
Jessica Hawkins was the fourth change and she and Squire bowled in tandem until the game had seen 23 overs, at which point captain Acton made a decisive change, bringing back Heather Stanbury to begun a second spell and, with her very first delivery she knocked over the stumps of Jemima Johnson with the home opener finally out for 44 having faced 73 deliveries.
The Ninch skipper continued to work her magic as she also brought back Abby Hayes for the next over and she too claimed a wicket with the very first ball of her second spell, bowling J Ashworth for a four ball two and, at the end of 25 overs, the home side were 102-4.
In her very next over Hayes replicated her previous over with a wicket off the very first delivery, this time clean bowling Gillian Northey for a 38-ball 28 and, at the end of 27 overs, Plymouth were now 104-5.
The bowling changes kept coming and, with the first ball of the 31st over, captain Acton struck to claim the sixth home wicket, bowling C Bryce for a 14-ball four, and so, at the start of the 32nd over, the score was 120-6.
It was in the 35th and final over that the seventh - and final wicket for the 8-player home team, was claimed with captain Acton getting her third, clean bowling D Smith for a 16-ball seven to leave Plymouth bowled out for 135.
Skipper Meg Acton took the bowling honours with her return of 3-23 (all three clean bowled) from six overs and four balls. Abby Hayes (2-15 from seven) and Heather Stanbury (2-1 from seven) had very similar figures and the other Bradninch bowling returns were: Louisa Squire (0-22 from four), Kirsty Trude (0-46 from seven) and Jessica Hawkins (0-10 from three).
The Bradninch run chase was launched by Kirsty Trude and Louisa Squire with the Plymouth opening overs sent down by Jemima Johnson and J Ashworth.
Just a single came off the first over sent down by Johnson and, after three were scored off the second, the third over, from Johnson, was a maiden.
At the end of the eighth over Bradninch were 33 without loss and off to a great start.
That brought a double change of bowling with Laura Foley and D Smith introduced, but Trude and Squire stayed in charge and fifty was reached when Trude rifled the first ball of the 12th over to the boundary. Indeed, at the end of the 12th, the score was now 56-0 with Trude on 25 from 29 balls and Squire on 29 from 43.
The halfway mark in the run chase was reached in the 14th over which left 21 more overs to complete the job and with a full set of wickets in tact.
The Ninch openers continued to dominate proceedings and, at the end of the 15th over, the run chase stood at 70-0. Just a single came off the 16th to leave Ninch 71-0 with Trude on 28 (off 38 balls) and Squire on 33 (off 57 balls).
Five runs came off the 17th as a three figure score drew ever nearer. Two fours in the 18th over from Squire meant, at the end of the over, the score was now 85 without loss with Squire on 42 (from 65 balls) and Trude on 32 (from 42 balls). It all mean that, with 17 overs to be bowled, Ninch needed just 51 runs - or three-runs-per-over to seal a historic victory. Eight runs were plundered off the 19th over with Trude the main beneficiary and, as the 20th over began, Trude had 38 (from 46 balls) while Squire was on 43 (from 67) in what was now a ‘race’ to the half century mark!
The 20th over saw another 13 runs scored and two milestones reached with Squire chalking up a half century and the team total passing into three figures!
Indeed, at the end of the 20th over, Ninch were 106 without loss with Squire having brought her 50 up, hitting her ninth four off the 71st ball she received.
Over 21 ended with the score on 113, Trude on 48 (from 53) and Squire on 52 (from 72).
The 22nd over was a quiet one, given what had gone on before with just two runs being scored.
In the 23rd over it was Trude’s turn to reach the milestone of a half century, her 50 arriving with a single off the 52nd ball she received and, at the end of over 23, Ninch were 117-0 needing just 19 for victory. Four runs came from the 24th over, at the end of which Ninch were now 121 without loss and just 15 runs shy of the winning line.
Over 25 yielded another six runs and, at the end of the over, Trude was on 54 (68 balls) and Squire was on 59 (82 balls) with Ninch 127-0 at the start of the 26th over.
Just two runs came off over 26, but the winning line was drawing ever nearer. However, to the second ball of the 28th over, the splendid innings of Luoisa Squire came to an end when she fell to a catch off the 91st ball she received, but she had more than done her job scoring a superb 62, hitting 10 fours and putting 132 runs on for the first wicket with Kirsty Trude.
Squire was caught by Jemima Johnson off the bowling of D Smith and in came skipper Meg Acton. Fittingly it was she who scored the winning runs for, after Trude had taken a single off the penultimate ball of the 28th over, captain Acton rifled the first ball she received to then boundary to confirm a nine-wicket success.
At stumps, Trude was unbeaten on 57, scored off 76 balls faced and she hit eight fours.