SWANAGE 122 (4pts) lost to WEYMOUTH 124-6 (18pts) by four wickets

WEYMOUTH made heavy weather of chasing a low target but the Seasiders eventually ground out a four-wicket triumph to claim their fourth County Division One win of the season.

Harry Mitchell’s men, who now sit third in the standings, excelled in the field with some superb catches, bowling tightly and dismissing the Swans for 122, Graham Puckett starring with 3-15 from nine overs.

However, Weymouth wobbled to 26-4 as Swanage displayed some clinical slip catching in threatening to pull off a shock turnaround.

The visitors were indebted to determined knocks from Neil Walton (36no) and Tim Guyett (26no) as Weymouth secured a second away victory of the campaign with 6.5 overs remaining.

Such a dramatic finish looked inconceivable as Weymouth made instant headway into the Swans’ batting order, Puckett benefitting from good catches by James Almond and Mitchell to oust Ollie Shrubsole and Craig Wells for respective ducks.

Walton (2-22) also weighed in, Simon Goldsack (2) chopping on to his stumps as Swanage hit trouble at 15-3.

Weymouth continued to stifle the hosts as Puckett trapped Jonathan Gregory (2) lbw, before Mitchell (1-23) bowled Ryan Norman (5) and Lloyd Beals (1-8) castled watchful opener John Lewis (24).

Geoff Willcocks (32) and Mike Hernandez (18) briefly rallied but Shafeek Urumancheri (2-25) helped polish off the tail as Swanage set their opponents a below-par 123 to win.

In reply, Weymouth openers John Wilson (14) and Dom Webb eased to 19-0 until the latter was adjudged leg before to Norman (2-15).

Webb’s dismissal sparked a run of 4-7 as Kieron Womble (2), Wilson and Simon Browne (3) were all snaffled at slip, Hernandez (2-28) linking well with Norman.

But Walton and Almond (21) steadied the ship until the latter was bowled by Steve Kent (1-23) to leave Weymouth on 66-5.

Mitchell (5) fell cheaply to Pete Richards (1-32) but superb battling innings from Walton and Guyett guided Weymouth home under pressure with an invaluable unbroken 43-run stand.

Speaking to Echosport, Weymouth captain Mitchell was glowing in praise for the duo.

“The top three, it was the first time they’ve failed as a group,” he confessed.

“I thought James batted really well and Neil’s knock was outstanding – a pressure knock in the context of the game and being there at the end.

“Tim as well, just playing his normal game with authority and maturity instead of trying to hit every ball for a boundary. The lower order really stepped up, which was encouraging.”

Elsewhere, unbeaten leaders Weymouth Seconds beat Bournemouth Fifths by seven wickets in County Division Six at Redlands.