DORCHESTER 179 (6pts) lost to SWANAGE 221-6 (20pts) by 42 runs

DORCHESTER ended their 2017 Dorset Funeral Plan Premier League campaign with a 42-run defeat at Redlands against title-chasing Swanage.

Second-placed Swans needed a win to maintain their championship interest, while hoping that Martinstown could beat table-toppers Broadstone.

And, while Broadstone went on to win the league, Swanage nevertheless claimed victory against Dorchester, who hosted the game at Weymouth’s Redlands ground due to a pitch booking mix-up at Dorchester Rec.

Swanage batted first, building an impressive 52-run stand for the opening wicket as Dan Salmon (25) and Craig Wells (34) held their own against the dangerous attack of James Dunham (1-36) and Josh Richardson (0-45).

Dunham broke through with the wicket of Salmon before Tom Salmon (31) continued the visitors’ momentum.

But an inspired spell from Jack Walkett (3-31) got Dorchester back into the game, aided by club skipper Simon Mitchem’s run out, as Swanage reached 128-5.

From there, Swanage replied with some big hitting as Robert Hatchard (36) and captain Ryan Norman (56no) laid into Dorchester’s change bowlers to boost their total to 221-6 after 50 overs.

Dorchester’s response was going solidly at 66-2 until they lost Mitchem (9) and Ben Macklin (31) for just one run.

A 65-run partnership from Sean Fitzgerald (27) and Mike Peak (57) kept the hosts’ chase alive until Fitzgerald became one of four run outs in the innings as Dorchester climbed to 132-5.

Peak went on to reach his fifty but ran out of batting partners as Ryan Norman (3-33) went through the tail to secure victory.

Speaking to Echosport after the game, Mitchem felt it was “disappointing” to finish the season with a loss, leaving his side in fourth place.

He said: “I think it’s disappointing to finish the year with a game of cricket that we probably should have won. It’s been a long season but overall we’ve done alright.

“We’ve played some great cricket at times and sometimes we’ve played some very average cricket which is a constant phenomenon really, that lack of consistency.”

Reflecting on the match, Mitchem admitted his team did not “bat well enough”.

“It was a very flat wicket and we just didn’t bat well enough, simple as that. We could have bowled a bit better, we had a few bad overs but it had a very end of season feel about it.

“We’ve got some good young cricketers, we’ve got a good base and we’re looking to add a few players next year and I think we’ll be there or thereabouts. I’d like to thank everyone behind the scenes for all their hard work as well,” he added.


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