Champs stunned by impressive Caswell
East Anglian Premier League: Horsford kicked off the season in magnificent style with a 166-run victory against champions Cambridge Granta at Manor Park on Saturday.
Norfolk all-rounder Luke Caswell was the star of the show, hitting 79 and taking two wickets in an economical spell, while there were also impressive contributions from debutants Daniel Clark, Michael Warnes and Reece O'Connell.
Horsford opted to bat first and after a shaky start, Clark (52) and O'Connell (29) put on 85 for the third wicket. They fell in quick succession, but Caswell – who hit three sixes and five fours – and Chris Spenceley (48no) then joined forces in a stand of 128 as the hosts posted 245 for five.
Warnes and Caswell then tore out the Granta top order as the visitors slumped to 47 for five, with Warnes taking three wickets. Former Horsford opener Jonny Atkinson endured a miserable return to Manor Park as he departed without scoring.
It was left to the spinners, Chris Brown and Australian O'Connell, to apply the killer blows as they each took two wickets to dismiss Granta for just 79 in the 35th over.
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Swardeston collected maximum points on the opening day as centurion Jaden Hatwell helped them to a 61-run win at Burwell.
Debutant Joel Abraham (35) and Richard Sims (38) laid the platform for Hatwell, who smashed four sixes and 22 fours in his innings of 141. George Walker (30) and Ian Tufts (33no) helped swell Swardeston's total as they declared on 309 for six.
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Peter Richer (71) and Frans Johannes Bester (51) both fired half-centuries for Burwell, but ultimately it was Swardeston's slow bowling contingent that made the difference, as Hatwell started the ball rolling with three wickets. Norfolk skipper George Walker then completed the job as he swept up the tail to finish with figures of four for 47, with Burwell all out for 248 in the 66th over.
Vauxhall Mallards also picked up 30 points, as they crushed Norwich by 182 runs at Brundall.
Mallards chose to bat first and at 61 for three, Norwich had reason to be well satisfied. But South African Glen Addicott marked his debut with a stunning display of hitting, as he blasted 10 sixes and five fours, making 100 from 76 balls. Along with 42no from fellow debutant Simon Potger, that allowed Mallards to reach 260 all out. The Watson brothers Aaron (three for 36) and Ashley (four for 79) were Norwich's main wicket-takers.
The Norwich reply never got going as Mallards skipper Paul Bradshaw, Martin Addison and Addicott each claimed two wickets to reduce the visitors to 69 for six. Potger then removed top scorer Chris Borrett (31) and the Australian debutant went on to take four for one in a brief, devastating spell which helped bowl Norwich out for 78 in the 31st over.
Great Witchingham finished nine runs short of victory as they drew an exciting match at Bury St Edmunds.
Having chosen to bowl first, the Witches' new overseas player, Ryan McCone, enjoyed two early successes as the hosts stumbled to 46 for four. Tom Huggins (86) and Toby Adams (40) led the recovery with a stand of 92 as Bury made 205 for nine from their 66 overs. Carl Rogers (three for 38) was Witchingham's leading wicket-taker.
Witchingham responded well and were in sight of victory as they reached 177 for four, Rogers having made 51. But when Shaun Arthurton (38) fell to a brilliant slip catch, the Witches' charge faltered and they closed on 197 for seven.