MARTINSTOWN 267-6 (20pts) beat CHRISTCHURCH 154 (5pts) by 113 runs

MARTINSTOWN earned their biggest win of the Dorset Premier League season, beating Christchurch by 113 runs at Lower Ashton Farm.

Charlie Durant and Will Maltby’s side were in the type of dominant form that took them to a title challenge last season.

With rain and drizzle throughout, overs were inevitably lost and taking the weather into account, Christchurch won the toss and bowled first.

They enjoyed immediate success as Sean Williams (4) was bowled by Henry Hayes (1-44).

READ MORE: Martinstown lose to Poole Town by 41 runs

What followed was a huge 131-run partnership for the second wicket as both Ed Nichols (60) and Lee House (56) roared to half-centuries, scoring seven and eight boundaries respectively.

However, Christchurch briefly fought back with three wickets in the space of 21 runs as Matthew Wright (2-33) accounted for Nichols and Ry Gerety (8) either side of James Cross (1-23) removing House.

Martinstown still had designs on a big score as Maltby added a flashy 25 from 26 balls containing two sixes.

He was upstaged by former skipper Sam Kershaw, who plundered an unbeaten 51 from 36 balls in an entertaining innings featuring six boundaries and three maximums.

Town were also helped by a generous 51 extras, closing on 267-6 from 44 overs.

After the early loss of Gareth Williams (6) to Charlie Andrews (1-34), Christchurch made good progress to 59-1 as Wright and skipper Craig Campbell defied the home attack.

However, Martinstown were not to be kept at bay much longer, reducing Christchurch to 65-5 with spin twins Durant (4-36) and Kershaw (2-35).

Kai Darwin hammered a brisk 20 from 14 balls, all but two runs coming from boundaries, until he was castled by the influential Durant.

Now at 91-6, Christchurch threw caution to the wind as Ben Nethersole (28) hit two fours and a six but he was bowled by returning opener Jacob Coombs (2-30).

Coombs, Kershaw and Jenson Stewart (1-0) then had little trouble wrapping up the innings for 154 as Martinstown recorded an emphatic win.

Speaking to Echosport, Durant said: “We did really well. We lost a wicket early but Lee and Ed came together and scored yet another 100 partnership.

“I’m sure down the years they’ve scored many together. I was happy for Lee to come in, he hasn’t played for the first team for a number of years.

“For him to come back and score 50, I was really happy for him.”

On bowling Christchurch out cheaply, Durant added: “It was nice because we haven’t really done that (to teams) this season.

“We haven’t had a settled opening partnership but Charlie bowled well opening up. I only brought myself on to try and beat the rain.

“I ended up taking Jacob off so we could beat the rain and credit to the umpires they kept us on.

“It was good to get a win. We haven’t won back-to-back so hopefully we can get something going in the second half of the season and be back where we want to be.”

Martinstown Seconds lost to Kingston Lacy by 103 runs in County Division Three.