Topsham 2nds toppled at Filleigh and slip to third in the table

PUBLISHED: 13:12 02 July 2019

Picture: Thinkstock

Picture: Thinkstock

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Topsham St James 2nd XI started the season with four consecutive wins, but they are now on a run of three consecutive defeats, following their latest reverse at Filleigh where they lost by four wickets, writes Mike Tracey.

Put in to bat, Topsham suffered the loss of talismanic opener Adrian Ferraro for a first-over duck, and never looked back.

There were four other ducks, and only Maddy Ross (14) and Will Purchall, with a nicely-crafted 17 not out, were able to give any support to the only batsman to look at ease, Narender Dhayal. Narender started very slowly, and tended to bat in spurts, but when the fancy took him he was irresistible, peppering the boundary and looking a class act. He finished with a well-merited 72, more than half the Topsham total of 136, which included 24 extras.

All the main Filleigh bowlers took wickets, with the exception of Simon Prosser, who bowled his eight overs for only 16 runs, and applied an early stranglehold.

Young Joe Floyd took the key wicket of Adrian Ferraro, while Dave Squire and Peter Buckley weighed in with two apiece.

The unlikely star of the show, however, was veteran Kevin Toze, whose accurate non-turning off-breaks snaffled five wickets for only nine runs, and induced some strokes that at least two of the batsmen will not wish to be reminded of.

Kevin was on the receiving end when he opened the batting and was himself out for a duck.

When Dan Butler followed soon after, Filleigh were 15-2, and Topsham were optimistic.

Home skipper Charles Cullen had other ideas, and he found the perfect partner in Fionn Toland (20) who played some nice shots and stayed with him while 75 runs were added to the total.

A couple of quick wickets then threatened another upset, especially when Cullen was out for 47, but Simon Prosser stayed calm to end on 25 not out, and steered his side to a well-deserved four-wicket victory.

Topsham used seven bowlers, all of whom performed steadily, but nobody could quite make the breakthrough.

The pick of the bowlers was 14-year-old Charlie Ferraro with 2-15, while the even younger Billy Knightley got 1-18. Maddy Ross, Narender Dhayal and skipper Jack Telford claimed one apiece, but it was not enough to make up for Topsham's poor batting. They took only six points from the game, and have now slipped to third in the league table.

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