DOLGELLAU (96 all out) suffered a narrow loss to North Wales League division one leaders Northop (114 for 9) on Saturday in a shortened match in what turned out to be Dolgellau’s first loss at home this season.
The players had to wait for the ground to dry out after heavy rain in the morning, and as a result the match was reduced to 25 overs a side, eventually starting at 4pm.
The Dolgellau bowlers did some good work to keep Northop to 114 for 9, but their batsmen were not up to the task in the face of good bowling and fielding by the visitors.
The one shining light in the hosts’ batting was Eric Herbert who struck 52 while no other batsman reached double figures.
Northop’s top scorer was all-rounder Tom Blackwell, who made 30 before he was lbw to skipper Phil Leeds to make it 76 for 5.
Three other batsmen made it to double figures, Andy Poynton scored 20 before he was bowled by Jason Weaver in the last over, Ben Beaver was run out by Weaver for 19 and Chris Brooks, 15, run out by Stuart Evans.
Mark Edmondson, Herbert and Leeds bowled well to keep the batsmen in check.
Edmondson bowled Darren Williams and Herbert bowled Harry Lewis while Leeds bowled Matthew Williams.
Northop captain Mark Poynton was stumped by Rob Humphreys off Weaver, and Evans ran out Henry Dowd, the innings closing on 114 for 9 after 25 overs.
Each bowler was allowed 6 overs, Leeds claiming 2 for 23 from his six, while Weaver had 2 for 18 from three overs, Herbert and Edmondson having the identical figures of 1 for 25, both from six overs. Runs were hard to come by, with only two fours being hit in the innings.
Dolgellau would have fancied their chances of reaching 115 for victory at 4.6 runs an over but with the exception of Herbert, the batsmen found it tough going, Northop’s strong bowling attack giving nothing away, supported by some excellent fielding.
It was 20 for 2 after seven overs, Geraint Jones bowled by Blackwell and Gareth Lanagan bowled by spinner Beaver, who also bowled Edmondson to make it 36 for 3.
In the meantime, Herbert was striking the ball hard and added 39 runs for the fourth wicket with Leeds.
Herbert reached his 50 off 34 deliveries with two sixes and eight fours, but was then well caught by Blackwell on the riverside boundary for 52 from 35 balls, the first of four wickets for Mark Poynton.
One run later Leeds was lbw to the same bowler for nine to leave it at 76 for 5.
This became 81 for 6 when Neil Mitchell was run out by Andy Poynton and 91 for 7 as Stuart Evans was run out by keeper Dowd after an lbw appeal was turned down.
Dolgellau could only manage five more runs to be all out for 96 with seven balls left in the innings.
Sam Williams was bowled by Mark Poynton, as was Jack Williamson, the final wicket falling when Weaver was run out by Rhys Johnson while going for a second run; the not out batsman being Humphreys as Northop won by 18 runs.
Mark Poynton finished with 4 for 30 from 6 overs, Beaver 2 for 28 from 6 and Blackwell 1 for 19 off 5.5 overs, Andy Poynton bowling 6 overs for 18 runs.
Northop take 11 points to consolidate their position at the top while Dolgellau’s four points keeps them in third.
This Saturday Dolgellau travel to Pontblyddyn while the Seconds are at home to Holyhead.