Safety beckons for three-in-a-row Westbury
County Division One: Westbury 1st XI 213-7 (38.3) Cheltenham 2nd XI 212 all out (40) – Westbury win by three wickets.
TOM Landon took two wickets with successive balls to bring the Cheltenham innings to a premature close and set up Westbury’s third win on the trot.
That still left a sizeable target of 213 but the Westbury batsmen passed it with nearly six overs to spare.
Wins against Aston Ingham and Thornbury Seconds had pulled the home side away from the relegation zone but with Cheltenham still in the bottom two, this game was an opportunity to increase the buffer.
Westbury got off to a good start when Charlie Gayther caught Matt Baker lbw for two in the third over with the score on six.
Opener James Schofield and Lysander Tarrant put on 42 for the second wicket before Schofield went lbw to James Walkley-Cox for 18 in the 10th.
Walkley-Cox claimed his second in the 17th over when wicketkeeper Jake Bonser stumped his opposite number, Chris Williams, to make it 72-3.
The third lbw of the innings came courtesy of Ed Edginton who removed Mohammed Rahman for 14 off 13 balls 105-4.
Naveen Thomas was the fifth to go, caught by Landon off the bowling of Dan Hockaday with the score on 126.
Edginton claimed his second wicket when Gary Morgan caught Amanveer Singh Jagdey to put the visitors at 138-6 after 29 overs.
He claimed his third wicket at the start of the 34th over when Alex Wyman caught Hassam Dahar who had made a quick 19.
Westbury were now looking for maximum bowling but Tarrant was inching towards his century.
He eventually went for 81 when he was caught by Bonser off the bowling of Wyman at the end of the 38th over with the visitors 197/8.
Fourteen runs came off the next two overs as Cheltenham looked to pile on late runs.
But the innings ended in the 40th when Landon bowled first Pravar Timmaraju and then Jack Freebury with the second and third balls of the over.
The home side got off to a cracking start with Greg Artus hitting three boundaries 213 off successive balls in the first over.
Artus also added a six as he hit 21 off 20 balls before being caught by Chris Williams off the bowling of Pravar Timmaraju.
The opening partnership with Alex Wyman had put 33 runs on the board in eight overs.
The partnership between Wyman and Charlie Gayther put on 26 for the second wicket with Gayther being bowled for 12 by Hassam Dahar at 59-2.
Dahar struck again two overs later, the 15th, trapping Francis Stirrup lbw to make it 70-3.
The score had moved onto 88 when Jake Bonser was caught for eight by Stefan Hunt off the bowling of Dahar.
The next two partnership doubled the score, putting Westbury back on track.
Dan Jarvis joined Alex Wyman who was on the verge of his half century with 46.
They moved the score onto 114-5 when Jarvis was removed by the bowling of Dahar for eight, the partnership with Wyman having contributed 26 runs.
Captain Dan Hockaday then came to the crease and together with Wyman moved the score onto 168-6.
Top scorer Wyman had his bails removed by Williams off the bowling of Dahar in the 31st over.
His score of 70 off 84 balls included nine boundaries with the partnership with his captain responsible for 54 runs.
Hockaday went in the 38th over but those seven overs contributed 37 runs, leaving Westbury just six runs short of the target.
The skipper had scored 37 runs, including five fours, when he went lbw to Pravar Timmaraju and the partnership with Gary Morgan had been worth 39 runs.
Morgan ended the game in style, getting the six runs required with a single blow over the boundary.
He finished 26 not out which included four boundaries and that match-winning six.
The win puts Westbury in seventh place 26 points ahead of their opponents with eight games remaining.
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