Cromer hopes dented

Cromer's hopes of challenging for the Norfolk Alliance title suffered a blow as they could only manage a losing draw at Swardeston in the Premier Division.

Cromer's hopes of challenging for the Norfolk Alliance title suffered a blow as they could only manage a losing draw at Swardeston in the Premier Division.

And on Sunday they were beaten by Topcroft by just one wicket in the semi-finals of the Lady Mary Trophy.

It was another disappointing result for Tom Davies and his team as another cup run came to an end.

Just the league fixtures remain now for Cromer as they look to push up the table and move on.

On Saturday against Swardeston skipper Tom Davies put the visitors into bat and they were 31-0 off the first 10 overs.

The home side's openers Murphy and Walker upped the run rate and when their partnership was ended by Elliott getting Murphy for 40, they had put on 78 in 21 overs.

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Martin (55) and Walker (53) had a partnership of 53 with Walker the next man to go. Martin batted with confidence to top score but was out to a fantastic catch from Colin Brown at point, off the bowling of Craske.

With 10 overs remaining Swardeston were 160-3 but added a further 88 runs, losing just one more wicket. Former Cromer captain Goodrum finished not out on 45 and Bilham was 21 not out as Swardeston made 248-4.

Cromer lost a man early with Rayno Arendse (8) out leg before to Dolding. Tom Davies and David Turner put on 45 before Davies was given out leg before on 36. Turner and Richard Charlwood had a stand of 34.

Turner, on his Saturday first XI debut, was dismissed for 20 off the bowling of Murphy.

Charlwood made an excellent 39 from 48 balls, but after his wicket in the 36th over Cromer were 124-5 it was a case of batting out the remaining overs for as many batting points as possible.

Barrett and Craske saw off the final four overs as Cromer finished 180-9. Dolding, Murphy and Cooper all took three wickets for the home side. Cromer came away from Swardeston with six points in this losing draw.

This Saturday sees the visit of reigning champions Downham to the Norton Warnes ground.

The second game of the weekend saw Topcroft come to Cromer in the semi-finals of the Lady Mary Trophy.

Topcroft put Cromer into bat. Arendse and Davies hit 24 from five overs before the loss of the captain to pro Gunawardene for nine.

Charlwood and Arendse had a small stand of 27 before the Topcroft pro dismissed Arendse. Charlwood made 17 before being bowled by Todd.

From 17 overs Cromer were struggling on 63-5.

Colin Brown and Jez Wright stopped the collapse with a 25 partnership. Adrian Buck replaced Brown (15) and he with Wright added 36 before Marshall bowled Buck for 19.

Wright then followed Buck back to the changing room following a good, patient knock of 26. Cromer were 131-8 with a possible seven overs remaining.

Liam Davies (14) and Luke Barrett (7) added valuable runs, but Cromer were all out in the 42nd over for 149.

Marshall finished with figures of 3-33 and Gunawardene, Baldwin and Todd all took two wickets.

Arendse and Michael Warnes made it very difficult for the top order Topcroft batsmen as both bowled with tremendous pace and accuracy.

Arendse was rewarded with the two Topcroft openers and the wicket of Gunawardene for nought. From his nine overs Arendse had marvellous figures of 3-6.

Warnes was very unlucky not to also take a wicket. When James Craske joined the attack he picked up two wickets, and from 24 overs Topcroft were 61-7.

Cromer seemed to be defending their score superbly, but Goodfellow and Rostron, together for 10 overs, added 66, guiding Topcroft into a dominant position.

When Rostron was dismissed for 34, his side needed just 24 runs from 11 overs with two wickets in hand.

Goodfellow was moving towards his half-century and with the single that got his 50 he also won the game for Topcroft.