Cromer CC settling in well in top division

Cromer's re-introduction to the Norfolk Alliance Premier Division could hardly have been tougher – but so far Tom Davies' newly promoted side have coped admirably.

Fixtures against Sprowston, Fakenham and Downham were followed by a tricky trip to North Runcton, when Cromer picked up their first win of the season.

They then followed that up with an emphatic home success over Stow and go into Saturday's clash with Diss at the Norton Warnes Ground well placed in the early league table – and refreshed after a break from Alliance action last weekend.

Referring to his side's tough start to the season, captain Davies said: 'I think those three teams will finish in the top four, so it's been a tough start, but hopefully we can kick on now.'

It promises to be an exciting summer for Cromer, who also have a match against the Lashings World XI to look forward to on Sunday, August 11, but for now the focus is on building on their solid start.

Five-wicket defeats against Sprowston and Downham were by no means straightforward for their opponents, while a winning draw against Fakenham was an unexpected bonus. Davies added: 'We've got a decent bowling attack and I think teams find it difficult to score against us, the scoring rate has been quite slow in the games so far. We just need to get it together with our batting now.'

South African Malcolm Cloete should prove useful in that respect, if his half-century against Runcton is anything to go by: 'When he went out we were struggling a bit and had we lost another wicket we might have thrown it away,' said Davies.

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'But he played a clever innings. He hit boundaries when he had to, nudged the ball around to keep the strike and kept the scoreboard ticking over.'

There was further good news for Davies when he was nominated for the Sky Sports ECB Coach of the Year awards.

He is among 40 coaches nationwide who will be guests at the final Ashes Test between England and Australia at The Oval in August. Davies, who is currently doing his Level Three coaching qualification, said: 'It's just nice to get recognised for doing something I really enjoy. Coaching is something I'd like to do more of – I've done some work for the Norfolk Cricket Board and with the county age groups and this year I'm in charge of the Norfolk Ladies team'

In Division One of the Norfolk Alliance Bradfield will be aiming to put a heavy defeat at Swardeston A behind them on Saturday when they play host to the section's bottom side, Dereham.

Sheringham, who went top of Division Four at the weekend by beating fellow high-flyers Stow A, travel to Mundford.

In Division Five Aldborough, whose scheduled fixture at the Green against Rockland at the weekend was called off after Friday's heavy rain, travel to Norwich B, while Cromer A are at Brooke A.

Bradfield A also hit the road on Saturday, with a match at Saxlingham A in Division Six.

n Match reports: Page 62