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Thetford chase not enough

PUBLISHED: 17:39 26 August 2008 | UPDATED: 21:12 07 July 2010

Thetford entertained Swaffham at the weekend and it was a familiar tale of woe for the hosts with a losing draw.

Both had weakened teams, with many second XI players featuring in the two line-ups.

Thetford entertained Swaffham at the weekend and it was a familiar tale of woe for the hosts with a losing draw.

Both had weakened teams, with many second XI players featuring in the two line-ups.

The game began with Swaffham winning the toss and electing to bat first on a batting friendly

track, though this might not have seemed the case early in the away side's innings.

Thetford opener J Lingard claimed the early scalp of opening batsman, G Boardman for 0. The scoring continued to move along slowly as

L Greyson and J Lingard bowled tight opening spells, with Swaffham losing their third batsman M Eagle for two - Lingard again.

The opening bowlers had now been replaced by D Phelps and P Sparkes, this change giving them a rest, but also in the hope the first change bowlers would keep the batsmen tied down. This paid off as Phelps had C Williams-Ward bowled for one and M Dye junior was caught for just four.

The stubborn opener I Walsh followed the pair back to the pavilion soon after, Sparkes bowling him for 21. Swaffham now found themselves 47 for five and as C Yates came to the crease, a captain's innings to salvage the collapse was much needed. He and R Impey put on a 60 partnership, taking advantage of loose overs from the Thetford spinners. However, M Terry did remove Impey for 14.

Unfortunately for Thetford, Swaffham capitalised on the continual loose bowling and Yates reached a rapid 50, followed by an even quicker M Smith (48).

Openers Lingard and Greyson were re-introduced at the death, hoping to remove the quick-scoring lower order.

Greyson performed well at this point, taking a very impressive 4-37, removing Yates, after he very sportingly walked when he was not given stumped by the umpire.

Thetford left the field feeling that they had let slip a very good position. From 47 for five, Swaffham ended their innings 194 all out.

The reply began in the perennial slow but controlled fashion.

However, K Greyson fell for 16 to M Smith when he was looking very comfortable after putting on 50 for the first wicket. L Conroy joined captain-for-the-day P Terry at the crease, but the former fell fairly soon after for 31, caught and bowled by the spinner T Exley.

The home side were going along at the required run-rate and a very good third-wicket partnership between L Conroy and A Dennis looked like keeping the hosts on track, until Conroy fell for 39.

A middle-order collapse, which was triggered by an inspired spell of bowling from M Smith, forced Dennis to take more risks than he should have needed.

S Lewis, P Sparkes and M Terry all went for six runs between them.

Dennis then departed for an excellently robust 52, keeping whatever little hope of still winning the game there was alive.

Phelps followed for a duck, leaving J Lingard and M Hudson to stay for the draw - with 10 and four not out, respectively.

A 90 per cent losing draw was yet another familiar sight for Thetford, closing with a near, but not near enough, chase of 175 for 8.

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