Pembroke County Cricket League
Pembroke 110-9 lost to Llechryd 113-4 ( 29 points) by six wickets.
Llechryd secured promotion following a comfortable win over Pembroke and they now have their sights set firmly on winning the race for the title.
Rivals Narberth saw their game with third placed side Hook washed out due to the wet weather and it looks likely that the destiny of the division two silverware will be decided on the final weekend of the season when Narberth visit the RDM Oval.
On a day that was forecast to be a wash out across the county, it ended up being a beautiful day in Pembroke with strong sunshine and a swirling wind that was blowing extremely hard.
Llechryd won the toss and put the hosts into bat and this proved to be a vital call to win. Skipper John Curran and Rhys Beard once again opened the attack and kept things tight and piled the pressure on throughout. Curran struck first when Luke Davies at square leg took a decent catch, and wickets kept tumbling with only Jack Harris 18, Aidan Fraser 14 and Sam Davies 23 showing real resistance.
Beard bowled beautifully all afternoon with some real pace and returned figures of 12 overs, eight maidens, two wickets for just ten runs, and he deserved more. Veteran Peter Betterley also took two wickets but the pick of the bowlers was Andrew Fletcher – his slow swingers in the wind proved to be difficult to get away and and he took four wickets for just nineteen runs. The home side innings ended on 110-9 .
The windy weather which got stronger as the afternoon unfolded made life very difficult with the ball doing all sorts, and Curran and Co knew they had to dig deep, but it didn’t start well. Opener Mike Carter was dismissed by the second ball of the innings and soon after this Curran was hit in the face with a short ball.
The skipper resumed after a bit of attention and he and Steve Smith took the game away with some superb hits both producing a combination of 4’s and big 6’s. Curran was eventually out LBW on 49, and Smith was caught on 23. Joe Mansfield and Graham Keen carried on in a similar vein and they saw their team home safely for a 29 point win. All rounder Sam Davies took 2-28.
Llechryd are now 47 points ahead of second placed Narberth with two games remaining although their title rivals have a game in hand which they play this afternoon (Sunday) against Pembroke.
This weekend the league leaders face Pembroke Dock at home followed by the title decider against Narberth which is also at home.