CRANBORNE 144 ao PUDDLETOWN 0-0 – match abandoned

PUDDLETOWN were left frustrated thinking what could have been as their County Division Two match against Cranborne was abandoned due to rain.

After an uncontested toss, Puddletown skipper Adam Barrett elected to field on a damp surface, and this decision appeared a good one when opening bowler Will Gage (2-49) clean bowled Dave Dawkins (3) with the score on 11.

Leading the run scoring charts, Cranborne opening batsman and dangerman Ollie Hand struggled against the early pace of Tom Blair (0-18) and Gage, and shortly after seeing off the new ball, found himself undone by a brilliant delivery from Callum Chaldecott, who nipped the ball away to find an edge which was snatched by Rob Snow at slip.

Despite difficult batting conditions, the aggressive approach from Cranborne appeared to be working as the middle of Dan Adlem (17) and Phil Park (44) punished anything short with a trio of sixes coming via the short leg side boundary.

With the score on 124-4 after 26 overs, the constant afternoon drizzle eventually turned into more substantial rain, resulting in both teams leaving the field.

With clearer sky in the distance, both captains opted for an early tea, in an attempt to continue the fixture later in the afternoon.

After an hour delay, play was eventually continued which saw Cranborne fall from 124-4 to 144 all out, in a period of just over seven overs.

The pace and accuracy of Adam Weir (3-26) and Laurie Stevens (3-30) caused all sorts of problems, which was duly supported by a brilliant fielding display from the Villagers, which consisted of four catches on top of a well-executed run out.

Just as Puddletown were leaving the field, rain began to appear and despite going out to face the first ball, the rain suddenly turned torrential leaving both skippers no choice but to shake hands and abandon the fixture.

Speaking after the abandonment, Barrett admitted that Puddletown were left frustrated with the outcome, but insisted the decision was the correct one.

Barrett told Echosport: “We can’t help but feel disappointed because the momentum was completely with us as we went out to bat. We put in an unbelievable bowling and fielding display after the rain break, and in all honesty I have no doubts we would have chased the reduced target of 114 without any issues.

“Although it’s frustrating, I’m sure that the correct decision was made to abandon the fixture though, as the square was nearly underwater after the second lot of rain. It’s something we just need to take on the chin, it’s a long old season and these things usually balance themselves out over the course of the season.”