WHILE the Sully Cricket Club Firsts moved into league top spot with a five-wicket win over Cynon Valley on Saturday, the Seconds were losing by the same scoreline.
Travelling to Aberdare, the Firsts elected to field and, on a soft strip with little bounce, skipper D Morgan opened the bowling and returned figures of two for 16 off 10 overs. He was well supported by M Sameer (two for 22 off eight overs) and the home side were being well contained. There was also a well taken catch by Trinash.
Reddy and Karthick, who took his first Spartans wicket, well caught behind by Mike Howe, continued the stranglehold and, following two excellent run outs, the home side were struggling on 78 for seven.
Cynon Valley lashed out but two quick wickets for Sumanth and one for A Davies, aided by a well taken boundary catch by Morgan, left the home side 93 all out.
On a wicket of many demons, R Howe and Krishna opened the batting for the Spartans who were soon in trouble with two wickets down for eight runs. Worse followed and, with the departure of Trinash, the score was 20 for three and it was game on.
Chris Howe was joined by Morgan and the former soon took a liking to the home bowlers, hitting five fours in a quickfire 32 before being well caught. Spartans were 64 for four, still needing 30 to win, and, when Sumanth went for a duck, they were really struggling at 65 for five. A Davies then joined Morgan and, with a partnership of 31, they gradually brought some sense to the proceedings to see their side home by five wickets in the 25th over.
CYNON VALLEY: Valley 93 all out (Sumanth 2-12, D Morgan 2-16, Sameer 2-22)
SULLY 1sts: 96- 5 (C Howe 32, D Morgan 26no, A Davies 14no)
Spartans’ Seconds played host to Pontnewynydd Seconds at Wenvoe, with ground staff once again having worked a minor miracle to produce a playable wicket after the recent weather.
However, it was no surprise that the ground was still fairly sticky and the visitors, winning an important toss, elected to bowl.
With the visitors bolstered by several first teamers, their quality was evident, with some very accurate bowling restricting the Sully openers to a slowish run rate for the first few overs. With the score at 52, the bowlers took their first wicket which was swiftly followed by two more for no additional runs. Luckily for the home side, Geraint Rees was batting very solidly while the wickets continued to fall at the other end. Not all of the Pont bowlers could maintain the earlier consistency and the extras started to contribute to a major part of the home side’s total. The seventh-wicket partnership of Rees and Crick contributed a useful 30 runs but, after the former fell to an uncharacteristic poor shot after reaching a creditable 55, Spartans struggled to reach140 all out.
In reply, the Pont openers also found the conditions challenging but were slightly ahead of the Spartans’ run rate when the first wicket fell to Iman Khan who was ably assisted by Dan Turnham on his league debut for the home side.
Pont’s No 3 batsman Alex Barry (68no), with an average score of 83 runs in the first team, quickly showed his quality against the Sully attack and, while Khan took a further two wickets, the visitors moved to a comfortable five-wicket win in the 23rd over.
SULLY 2nds: 140 all out (G Rees 55)
PONTNEWYNYDD 2nds: 141- 5 (A Barry 68no; I Khan 3-45)
This week, weather permitting, the first team take on St Fagans on Saturday in a crucial top-of-the-table clash.With no Saturday game for the Seconds, they meet Barry West End in a friendly on Sunday.