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CRICKET: Paul Payne vows Weymouth will keep fighting
PARLEY 262-6 (20pts) beat WEYMOUTH 136 (5pts) by 126 runs
PAUL Payne has vowed that Weymouth will keep fighting despite looking all but doomed in the Dorset Premier League.
The Seasiders need to win their last three games to stand any chance of retaining their top-flight status, but while there is still hope they will continue to scrap for every point.
Speaking after Saturday’s home defeat against unbeaten table-toppers Parley, stand-in skipper Payne said: “Every game has been difficult for us all season but while it’s still possible for us to stay up we will keep fighting.
“We have pretty much got a win our last three games now, starting with Dorchester next week.
“They are in the same situation and irrespective of our positions in the league that is always a massive game, so our first aim is to get ourselves up for that and give it everything we have.
“For 75 per cent of the game against Parley we matched them so if we can just find that other 25 per cent next Saturday we will stand every chance.”
The Seasiders looked in deep trouble when Sam Collins (55) and Mark Morley (112) put on 150 for the opening wicket but they never dropped their heads and by the close of the innings had pegged Parley back to 262-6.
The track looked primed for scoring runs but excellent fielding and fine bowling from Dan Hutchens (2-52), Ben Lawes (1-52) and Harry Mitchell (1-34) ensured Weymouth were still in with a chance come the halfway stage.
Jim Ryall (1), Dean Janaway (13), Will McKay (8) and Kieron Womble (13) all went cheaply in reply but with star man Ben Lawes (51) looking well set and Payne (20) next man in there was still hope.
The duo began confidently but when Lawes fell to a caught and bowled the writing looked on the wall.
Payne fought gallantly but he then departed to a run out and from there the Seasiders collapsed from 134-6 to 136 all out, with their last four batsmen all falling for ducks.
Payne, whose side now sit 40 points adrift of safety, added: “They put on a big opening partnership but despite that everyone did superbly in the field and Ben, Dan and Harry all bowled really well to keep us very much in the game.
“To keep them to 262 from 150-0 was a fantastic effort on a good track with a fast outfield and afterwards everyone was buzzing.
“We then came out and at one stage looked in a decent position for a real good run chase, but unfortunately we then lost two quick wickets and from there we just fell away.
“Apart from the last 20 minutes we were very much in the game but that is what the top sides do. They bat all the way down and then put the squeeze on you with the ball.
“Fair play to them because they are a very good side and all we can do now is move on and look to win the next one.”
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