Budleigh and Exmouth in top two cricket positions

Amazing innings from James Horler

Amazing innings from James Horler - Credit: Phil Mingo/PPAUK

The A Division of the Tolchards Devon Cricket League is taking shape and the top two positions are currently occupied by Budleigh Salterton CC and Exmouth CC. 

Budleigh are just two points clear of their local rivals after securing the maximum 20 points with a brilliant 10-wicket victory over a thoroughly outplayed Abbotskerswell last weekend. 

The visitors opted to bat first and made a solid start, reaching 34 before the fall of the first wicket, Joel Murphy taking a catch from the bowling of Jack England. Abbotskerswell formed another strong partnership, taking their score to an impressive 94/1. 

The match changed when Lloyd Murrin trapped Nick Watkin leg before on 31 and the removal of opener Eddie Smouth-Cooper for 62, Edward Doble taking the wicket, prompted a massive collapse. 

Abbotskerswell lost their final eight wickets for just 43 runs, with Murrin and Doble doing most of the damage. Murrin ended with fine figures of 4/25 and Doble took 3/24. 

If the Budleigh bowling was impressive, the batting was a different level. Chasing the total of 163, openers Marc Troman (43) and Dylan Penberthy-Hutchings (92) reached the target without losing a wicket. 

Exmouth made the short trip to Kilmington on Saturday and also bagged maximum points after the most extraordinary batting performance.  

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An incredible opening partnership of 313 brought two of the finest knocks anyone will see all season. Jason Niemand scored a blistering 159 from 109 balls and James Horler backed up his partner with 146 from 126. 

The beleaguered Kilmington attack finally got some reward but Luke Davies (39) and Cameron Kidd (21) kept up the pressure, as Exmouth reached a huge total of 404/4 from their 50 overs. 

To their credit, the Kilmington openers offered some resistance with a stand of 74 before Kidd and Niemand grabbed their wickets. A smart run out from Kidd piled on the pressure for Kilmington, who never had a genuine chance of chasing down Exmouth, finishing 201 runs short. Lawrence Greenway took three wickets for Exmouth.  

The fixtures this weekend will see Exmouth hosting Plympton and Budleigh travel to Seaton.