League win still elusive

Alfreton 2nds v Denby 3rds'Tristan Swallow, in bowling action for Alfreton 2nds hits Ian Glenn's stumps with his first delivery to the new Denby batsman.
Alfreton 2nds v Denby 3rds'Tristan Swallow, in bowling action for Alfreton 2nds hits Ian Glenn's stumps with his first delivery to the new Denby batsman.
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Alfreton CC 1sts are still searching for their first league win of the Derbyshire Premier League season, despite coming close once again on Saturday against Chesterfield at Queen’s Park.

Chasing down 168 to win, the visitors fell 19 runs short but will be happy with the ten point haul they took away from the weekend.

After winning the toss, Alfreton captain Alex Mace decided to bowl, a decision that backfired early on as the Chesterfield openers raced to 35-0.

However, Mykylo Bird was the first batsman to fall, which started a flourish of wickets, as he was caught by Jake Simpson off the bowling of Richard Briggs.

Elliot Savidge (3-21) then impressed by taking the wickets of Ben Slater, Matt Fletcher and Simon Lacey. And with Briggs (3-32) taking the wickets Drage Thompson and Tim Kirk, Chesterfield were struggling on 82-6.

Paul Burdett and Matt Higginbottom rebuilt the innings slowly before drinks, and then kicked on before the latter was LBW to Andy Gwatkin (2-34).

Burdett wasn’t done there though and he was eventually the last man to fall for 57. He had guided his side to 167 all out.

In reply, Alfreton’s chase began badly as they fell to 16-4, Higginbottom picking up three of the four wickets to fall.

Anthony Mosca and Andy Gwatkin revived the visitors’ hopes as they shared in an 86-run partnership.

However, when both fell in quick succession, Mosca for 52 and Gwatkin for 32, the momentum swung back the way of the home side.

John Aspinall (19) and Savidge (11) kept Alfreton in the hunt but further wickets fell and the away side were left to play out the last five overs nine down. Callum Spencer and Briggs ensured the losing draw for Alfreton and a points haul of ten but the feelings leaving the ground were that it could have been a lot more.

Alfreton’s next game is at home against Sandiacre on Saturday.