Norfolk slide to a third successive defeat as neighbours take control
- Credit: James Bass
Norfolk's disappointing Anglian League campaign continued on Sunday when they were well beaten by Suffolk at Hintlesham.
Michael Few's side suffered a third successive defeat as their neighbours made home advantage count to record a comprehensive 8½-3½ victory.
There was a boost for the captain and coach in the lead-up to the fixture, with talented youngster Toby Briggs back from university in the United States and available to play, but his efforts weren't enough to turn the tide.
Briggs teamed up with Thomas Nudd to pick up a half in the foursomes, but that was as good as it got for Norfolk before lunch, with the three other games all going Suffolk's way. Warren Bates and Giles Evans lost 7&5, Iain Yule and Jack Cullington 3&2 and Carl Green and Simon Clark 1 down.
The visitors added three more points to their tally in the singles, with Briggs, Cullington and Bates all successful, but it was not nearly enough. Bates showed what he was made of by winning the match of the day against Suffolk champion James Biggs 3&1 while Bates (1up) and Cullington (4&3) were the other winners.
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Norfolk are next in action on August 5 when they take on Leicestershire and Rutland at Royal Cromer and it's sure to be another tough challenge, with their opponents having won all three of their matches so far.
'I can't be too critical of the players – they all gave their best and no-one played badly,' said Few. 'It was a good effort but you have to admit the better side on the day won it.'
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Norfolk's seconds followed up a win over Northants in their previous match with a solid 6-6 draw against Suffolk at Caldecott Hall. The tightness of the fixture was emphasised in the foursomes as three of the games were halved as the hosts came out on top 2½-1½. It was close again after lunch, with Suffolk edging it to claim a share of the spoils.
Craig Spurr and Liam Cossey recorded a 2&1 win in the morning while Dylan Green and Aiden Tanner, Shaun Larkins and Kevin Webb and Richard Lindley and Richard Wilson recorded halves. After lunch Norfolk's points winners were Wilson (1up), Green (2&1), Lindley (4&2) and Spurr (half).