Pembroke County Cricket League
Llechryd 192 for 9 (29) beat Carew 2nds 127 all out (7)
Llechryd moved into pole position at the top of division two following a comprehensive victory over Carew 2nds and their crunch encounter with second placed Narberth in a few weeks time promises to be an intriguing confrontation.
Their south Pembrokeshire rivals saw their game abandoned on the weekend when veteran umpire John Williams was struck with the ball and they now trail the Teifisiders by 21 points and the title race promises to go right down to the wire.
Opener James Betterley was the hero of the hour for the hosts as he produced a well crafted half century and one that he had been promising to secure for many a week as he has been in superb form. However he was unlucky not to go on and double his score when he was run out.
Betterley opened with Mike Carter and without the likes of Steve Smith and Graham Keen the two needed a decent start and they did just that as they progressed to the three figure mark after just 20 odd overs.
Skipper John Curran and Jonny Lewis kept the scoreboard ticking over before the former was caught and bowled off a superb catch and Joe Mansfield and Tom Beard continued with the good work adding a few more whilst Lewis held the innings together and pushed the score up to 192-9 with Lewis making 36.
Iori Hicks was the pick of the Carew bowling attack and he picked up three wickets.
Curran and Beard opened the attack and the duo kept things very tight but they were left frustrated by a number of edges which didn’t quite stick but Curran finally got the breakthrough. Next up was talented batsman Rob Hicks an ex Wales minor county player, and he edged his first ball off Curran over slip for four runs. He then smashed two 4s in the next over to emphasis his class.
However wily old bowler Peter Betterly had other ideas and the super veteran took a super one handed catch to remove Hicks and this was a big wicket in the overall context of the game. From then on Llechryd upped the tempo and kept things tight and wickets came regularly thanks to some super fielding and stumpings from wicket keeper Drewy Davies.
Carew though steadied the boat with Iori Hicks (26) and Barry Evans playing very well and the visitors were 110-6 with eight overs remaining although an outright win looked out of reach. Evans eventually went for 20 and Curran managed to get Hicks to steer the ball into the hands of Lewis to end any hopes of success.
Llechryd were hell bent on gaining maximum points and needed two wickets in the final over to achieve this and up stepped skipper Curran who skittled the woodwork with his first ball and with one ball remaining Curran trapped a tail ender in front of his wickets and he was out lbw.
Curran returned figures of 2-24 and he was well served by the ever dependable Peter Betterley who took 3-32.