Cricket: Emsworth find their form to unlock Locks

Emsworth ended their poor run of form when they hosted Locks Heath II at Cold Harbour Lawn in division four south of the Hampshire League.

With key players missing, Emsworth packed their side with second XI players.

Emsworth captain Mark Martin elected to bowl first on a low, slow and slightly damp wicket despite well over 500 runs having been scored in the last match against Bramshaw.

Emsworth set about keeping their opponents to a small total and Lee Gray (3-19) opened the door by trapping one of the Locks Heath openers plumb in front. He nearly bagged another lbw but was turned down by the umpire.

Locks Heath tried to up their rate but the wicket was proving difficult and Gray bowled Locks Heath’s other opener with a long hop.

Emsworth piled on the pressure with spinners Mick Offord (3-24) and Graham Smith (3-27) bagging three wickets each.

Locks Heath finished with a modest 114.

Emsworth set about getting their target slowly but surely with openers Jack Mason and Will Pitts getting a solid start.

But the pitch was tricky and Mason was lbw for ten. Pitts kept the scoreboard ticking over but was undone by the slow nature of the pitch, falling for a well-earned 33.

Newcomer P Newar, a squaddie from Thorney Island, took the attack to the opposition and eased to a comfortable 33 before edging a slower ball straight into the keeper’s gloves trying to guide it towards third man.

Gray and Dave Pitts rotated the strike and found the boundary ropes, guiding Emsworth to a comforatble five-wicket win, both finishing not out - 19 for Gray and 12 for Pitts. It was a hard day’s work in difficult conditions but Emsworth had gained an overdue win.

Salthill v Emsworth III

Hants League regional div four SE

On a blustery day, Salthill decided to field first and Josh Holder removed both openers in quick succession.

Wickets fell before J Johnson and J Riches came together. They put together a decent partnership which ended when Johnson was run out on 49. Riches fell soon after.

Only a stubborn last-wicket partnership denied Salthill the full ten wickets. Emsworth finished on a below par score of 162 for nine. The pick of the bowlers was Holder (3-33).

Salthill began brightly with opener Trevor Allmack hitting a brisk 30. A small middle-order collapse threated to derail the Salthill innings until Ashley Court and Tim Longland came together to see Salthill home with five overs to spare.

Court hit the winning runs to take himself to 50 not out and Longland ended on 30 not out.