ANTHONY Atkinson hit his maiden Premier Division hundred as Plymouth got back to business with a three-wicket win over visiting North Devon.

Acting skipper Hamish Gardiner wanted a response after the defeat by Bovey Tracey and already had one with a 10-wicket T20 win over Cornwood in midweek.

Plymouth took the same positive mindset into Saturday’s match and produced the chase f of the day in the top flight to pull off another win.

Gardiner concluded proceedings by smashing opposite number Barney Huxtable for six to win the game with seven balls to spare.

For Gardiner, standing in during the injury absence of Sam Stein, it was a sign the team is serious about improving.

“We showed out ruthlessness against Cornwood and carried that attitude into the North Devon game,’ said Gardiner.

“Having inserted North Devon on a good wicket, young seamers Dan Goodey and Joe Hagan-Burt were superb with the new ball.

“Jack Hale controlled the middle overs well for us.

“James Toms and Anthony Atkinson gave us a fantastic platform and James Walsh carried on his great form.

“Anthony and Joe produced a match-defining partnership and it was a pleasure to witness Anthony’s first league hundred for Plymouth.

“North Devon showed plenty of grit to remove both of our established men and made it tough going for the middle and lower order.

“It was a great win for us, we showed plenty of our own determination to put right areas we were seeking to improve.”

North Devon opener Tom Ansell batted through for an unbeaten 117 in the visitors’ total of 277 for six.

Dan Bowser and Max Curtis, county players past and present, went cheaply to Joe Hagan-Burt (3-48).

Ansell just kept batting and kept putting together partnerships with successive batsmen.

There was a stand of 44 with Kyle Verreynne (25), one of 46 with Huxtable (16), one of 85 with Ben Mason (32) and an unbroken one of 76 with Josh King.

King clouted 58 not out off 18 balls with eight fours and three sixes, easily the briskest half-century in the Premier Division so far this season.

Atkinson’s 112 off 96 balls – 12 fours and four sixes – got Plymouth up to 197 for three in reply. The stand of 136 with Walsh (59) helped things along.

Gardiner then saw it through for the city side, making 59 not out at his end while the rest came in bits and pieces at the other from the middle order.