Three centuries as Swardeston pass 400 in Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League

Great Witchingham opener Sam Arthurton makes his ground during Saturday's home match against Frinton

Great Witchingham opener Sam Arthurton makes his ground during Saturday's home match against Frinton Picture: TIM FERLEY - Credit: Archant

An incredible display of big hitting from Joe Gatting capped off a memorable day for Swardeston's batsmen as they piled up the runs in a one-sided East Anglian Premier League clash.

The club captain turned on the style to become the third centurion of the day and take his side up to the heady heights of 407-4 in their 50 overs against visitors Copdock.

And he certainly wasted no time in following the earlier examples of Jordan Taylor and Stephen Gray, taking just 37 balls to make an unbeaten 105 that included seven fours and no fewer than 11 sixes.

It was the first time a side had passed 400 since the introduction of the 50 overs per side format to the league and helped Swardeston to an emphatic 224-run win that maintained the pressure on long-time leaders Sudbury, with six rounds of matches to be played.

Following Sudbury's hard-fought two-wicket win at Horsford, achieved off the penultimate ball of the innings, Gatting's men remain 40 points off the pace. But they have a game coming up at the defending champions later this month so remain very much in the hunt.

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It was one-way traffic at The Common from the moment the home side won the toss, with Taylor (133 in 119 balls) and Gray (101 in 110) setting the tone for the day before Gatting's late onslaught. There was nothing the Copdock bowlers could do to slow down a scoring rate that eventually topped eight an over, with Jack Beaumont's figures of 10-0-114-1 neatly summing it up.

All told Swardeston hit 58 boundaries in their 50 overs - 41 fours and 17 sixes.

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Copdock were never going to match those amazing statistics and ended up being dismissed for 183 in the 40th over, with Paul Lambert taking 4-19 and spinner Joe Flatt proving that economical bowling was possible by sending down 8.4 overs for just 34 runs while taking a wicket.

Over at Manor Park a much more competitive game was taking place, with Horsford giving a good account of themselves before being edged out in a thrilling finish.

After being asked to bat first the hosts were grateful for an excellent 110 in 123 deliveries from opener Chad Bowes as they made 227-9 in their 50 overs, with a quickfire 39 not out down the order from Norfolk skipper Chris Brown helping them up to a competitive total.

Sudbury had to fight every inch of the way to overhaul it, but Ben Reece eventually saw them over the line in the final over with an unbeaten 28.

Great Witchingham ended up finishing just 19 runs short in an entertaining game against Frinton at Walcis Park.

The visitors posted a daunting target of 295 after winning the toss with Kyran Young, who finished unbeaten on 99, and Michael Comber (82) putting on 153 for the third wicket.

In response Sam Arthurton and James Spelman put on 94 for the first wicket, while Brett Stolworthy later made a swift 42, but the Witches were always behind the asking rate and finished on 276-9.

Norwich were involved in an even closer game at Cambridge Granta which they lost by nine runs. They did well to dismiss their hosts for 177 (Will O'Donnell 4-43, Jamie Mirner 3-42) but ended up being bowled out for 168 in the 48th over. Jack Newby (62) and Matthew Collinge (58) put on 100 for the fifth wicket but it was not enough, with in-form Raj Singh taking 7-21.

Vauxhall Mallards were bowled out for 176 chasing Burwell and Exning's 236, Troy Allan (4-46) shone with the ball while No 9 Paul Bradshaw top scored with 42 not out.

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