Denby enjoyed an excellent weekend with three wins and a winning draw from their four league games.
This was followed on Sunday by the hosting of the Derbyshire Police and the cast of Emmerdale in a charity event for MS. The event was attended and enjoyed by hundreds of people in near perfect weather. (See page 16 for more details.)
Denby firsts enjoyed the better of their game with Eckington, although unable to force victory. Put into bat, they made a competitive 235-8 from their 50-over innings.
Although there were no half centuries, Michael Mitchell helped to get the innings off to a solid start with 44 and there were other contributions from Pete Scott (34) who unfortunately had to retire hurt, Sunil Bhatt (34) and Stuart Poplar (24).
The impetus at the end came from Ahtesham Yaqoob, who made an explosive 40, which included six sixes.
For Eckington, Dye and Balfour did their best to maintain some control and were rewarded with three wickets apiece.
The Eckington reply was soon in tatters as they slumped to 16-3, which included two needless run outs.
These early losses left Eckington looking to salvage a losing draw with opener Alan Firth proving the main stumbling block.
Although wickets fell at regular intervals to leave the innings tottering at 75 for 8 with 12 overs remaining, he eventually found an ally in Leonard and the innings moved onto 102-8 when time was called.
Firth batted throughout for an unbeaten 62 with Leonard the only other batsman to reach double figures.
Paul Allen bowled well to return figures of 3-25 while Greg Cork took 2-22 in an effective spell.
Although the win would have been good, the return of 20 points was welcome following last week’s loss at Marehay. On Saturday, Denby have another important game when they travel to Clay Cross for a 1pm start while on Sunday they take part in the finals day of the County League T20 competition, at the County Ground.
They will face Sawley & Long Eaton Park at 2.30pm and, if successful, then move onto the final where they will face the winners of Swarkestone and Matlock.
The second team secured another 27-point maximum haul when they outplayed Belper Meadows.
Batting first, the innings of 217-8 had a consistent look although it was disappointing that there were no half centuries.
The top scorer was extras with 39 and, from the bat, Stephen Payne hit 38, the rest of the total being made up of modest contributions.
Rob Borland was the most effective bowler for Belper, putting in a 14-over stint to take 2-39.
There was a brief threat when Adrian Marsh (22) and Phil Ince (26) were together but when they were dismissed the innings simply fell away with the final wicket falling in the 43rd over.
Fraser Kirk produced a fiery spell and there were three wickets apiece for the wily pair of Gary Cresswell and Ian Burgoyne as Meadows were dismissed for 108.
Denby took 27 points to Belper Meadows’ five points and this latest win leaves them in midtable with a visit from Duffield to look forward to on Saturday.
The thirds and fourths both took 22 points from the weekend.
The thirds were at home to Belper Meadows seconds and were indebted to the bowling of Andy Parkin who turned the game on its head with a spell of 6-22 in 11 overs. At one stage, the Belper innings stood at a healthy 93-2 with Tom Buckley (41) and Mitchell Robinson (33) well set but the intervention of Parkin saw them collapse to 129 all out.
Nick Smith provided good support by picking up three wickets. Tom Mounsey (28) and Paul Kay (39) took Denby into a strong position before the spin of the promising Ben Buckley (3-42) and Dave Nightingale (3–25) reduced the innings to 90-7.
Fortunately, this team has some batting depth and Simon Bria, in partnership with Sam Stephens, took them to an important victory.
This Saturday, the thirds are at home, where they play Duffield seconds.
The fourths also took 22 points by knocking off 166 on their visit to Mugginton, where Duffield thirds play.
Mick Smith was the pick of the Denby bowlers taking 4-35. Denby lost a couple of early wickets but Nathan Clarke kept up his impressive form with an aggressive 95, receiving good support from Neil Cox, who was 29 not out when the winning hit was made.
With Calow losing, this result moved them up to the top of Division 9N and they will be looking to consolidate when they host Cutthorpe on Saturday.