Comprehensive win for Porthcawl Cricket Club firsts | News

Thursday, 13 June 2019

– Cricket

by Contributed ItemContributed Item


Porthcawl bounced back to winning ways following last week’s reverse at table-toppers Morriston, with a comprehensive 87 run victory over Llanelli at Locks Lane.

It is now three wins in four matches for Nick Morgan’s side, a run that has lifted the Seasiders to fourth spot in Division Three of the South Wales Cricket Association.

Asked to bat first by the Stradey Park skipper, Morgan and Mark Dixon gave the hosts a steady start with 41 on the board before Morgan departed for 16.

Star batsmen Rob Jones soon followed after a rare failure but Dixon recovered the panache of previous seasons as he glued the innings together as a clatter of wickets saw the middle order capitulate, the hosts in strife at 102-6.

Dixon’s excellent effort came to an end when he was caught off the bowling of youngster Owen Baxter for 56. Six fours highlighted Dixon’s half-century and ended a rare barren spell for Porthcawl’s junior coach.

The innings could have buckled completely but three batsmen rose to the challenge to take the Seasiders to a healthy 179-8 after the allocated 50 overs.

Veteran and former skipper Mark Lewis was at the heart of the recovery but found a willing ally in Tim Richards, who is having a fine season and continued his fine all-round form with 20, including three boundaries.

14-year-old Spencer Morgan, son of skipper Nick, joined Lewis with the score on 140-8 and the pair added 39 unbeaten runs in a superb display of sensible batting.

Lewis ended 27 not out to again emphasise his mature approach in the middle order. Morgan finished unbeaten on 22, his career best for the first team, both batsmen finding the ropes three times.

Owen Baxter was the most successful Llanelli bowler with 3-47 from 10 overs while Aled Gilley’s 10 frugal overs yielded 2-18. There was also a wicket apiece for Daniel Lewis, Joshua Williams and Osian Evans.

Porthcawl’s opening bowlers Mark Bevan and Chris Holden ripped through the visitors’ early batting as the visitors slumped to 15-4, then 18-5, and were only saved from total capitulation by Llanelli captain Rhys Westcott who hit a rapid 32, with a six and four fours.

Support came from Daniel Lewis and Sam Woller who added 16 and 14, but, from a recovery to 72-6, young Spencer Morgan weaved his leg spin magic to add to his growing reputation.

Llanelli were bowled out for 92. Morgan’s spinners brought him the rich reward of 3-14 from 3.5 overs while Mark Bevan’s remarkable accurate opening spell of eight overs, five of which were maidens, earned him the sensational figures of 3-7.

Holden’s seven overs yielded 2-25 and Rob Jones took 1-10 from six overs while Steffan Flood secured a superb run out to add to his catch.

Porthcawl 179-8, Llanelli 92 all out.

Worryingly, Porthcawl seconds could only field eight players for the visit to Ammanford, emphasising the need for reinforcements at Locks Lane, but the depleted side put up a remarkably resilient performance before losing out by seven wickets.

Skipper Marc Thompson was full of praise for his troops: “I cannot tell you how proud I am of the lads. They were outstanding and I was proud to skipper them,” he said.

Following the early loss of Billy Frost and a slump to 35-3, former first team skipper and Wales over-50 international Steve Richmond knuckled down to lead the revival, helped by young Isaac Cronje.

Richmond’s brave innings ended with his score on 31, with four boundaries the high points. Cronje was joined by veteran Paul Mason, who captained the side for 12 years before standing down this season.

Mason’s appetite has not diminished, however, and, after Cronje was dismissed for an excellent career-best 39, including four boundaries, Mason exploded into action with a remarkable hard-hitting innings of 51 not out.

He cleared the boundary three times and also cracked five fours in a stunning display that enabled the visitors to total a healthy 165-6 after their 40 overs.

Llyr Morgan impressed with 2-32 and the other wickets were shared one each by Sam Potter, Iestyn Jones, Eirian Morgan and Oliver Pallot.

It was always going to be a hard task to try to contain the hosts, with three fielders short, but Porthcawl bowled and fielded valiantly and it took the home side 36.2 overs to reach their target.

They were led by a stubborn undefeated 67 from opener and captain Guto Llyweyn, which contained seven fours, and fellow opener Adam Lyons stroked three boundaries in his 37. Eirian Morgan chipped in with 20.

Blair Driscoll stemmed the flow of runs with 2-34 from eight overs and Kevin Rees took 1-13 on his welcome return to the club.

Although Marc Thompson, Isaac Cronje and Steve Richmond were wicketless, they all bowled miserly eight over spells to take the game virtually down to the wire.

Ammanford thirds 166-3, Porthcawl seconds 165-6.

John Edwards

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