Agonising defeat sends Fourth XI down
Lymington Fourths face the prospect of playing next season in Regional Division Four following their dramatic 5 run defeat against New Milton. The side had looked fairly secure after a good run of results during July, but the narrow defeat to fellow strugglers New Milton sunk Meg's men to third from bottom in the table. Earlier it had looked as if Martin Hunt's selection had paid dividends for the captain as he notched up 74 as Lymo chased Milton's 193 for 5. But with just 5 runs required last man Ali Iles was dismissed to leave Lymington contemplating a swift return to the divison they were promoted from last summer.
The Seconds wrapped up their campaign with a 4 wicket defeat against Bramshaw. The game had been in some doubt until the groundstaff finally won the battle to remove gallons of water from the saturated Sports Ground square early on Saturday morning. All the hard work seemed to be paying off for Lymington as Glyn Treagus and Tom Carter began the innings in positive fashion, adding 44 for the first wicket before Treagus played on for 23. Carter continued his recent good run of form but, having just smashed a huge six into the churchyard to bring up his half century, lost concentration and was caught at slip for 51. Three more wickets soon fell to leave Lymington struggling on 104 for 5. Trevor Phillips hit a brisk 47 while Craig Tapper memorably launched a big six over the clubhouse as Lymington closed their innings on 183 for 8.
Bramshaw's free-scoring openers Hart and Ridgeway took advantage of some extremely generous Lymington bowling to race away to 59 from just 8 overs. Hart, who had lofted three sixes off Norton was then dismissed by the same bowler for 28. The incoming Terris (38) carried on the assault, although the introduction of Treagus (1 for 24) did at least slow things down a little. Ridgeway (51) and Terris (38) had taken Bramshaw to 122 for 1 when Martin Gregory removed Terris for 38. Ridgeway (51) also fell in Gregory's next over, and when Worrall was given out LBW off Treagus the visitors were looking jittery at 132 for 4. However, Brearly (who had earlier conceded just 9 runs in his 12 over spell) once again proved to be the thorn in Lymington's side as he and Boote (24) added 34 to take Bramshaw to the brink of victory. Adie Hunt gave Lymington a glimmer of hope with two late wickets, but Brearly held on to hit the winning run to give his side a deserved 4 wicket victory.
The defeat means that Lymington Second XI ended the season in 12th place with 6 wins from 14 matches. This was a little disappointing in view of last season's 5th place finish, but not entirely unexpected with injuries and First XI call ups continually upsetting the balance of the team. Though there were encouraging signs, such as the emergence of batsmen Tom Carter, Ed Carter and Marc O'Sullivan, the overriding lesson from this season was that the club's young bowlers will have to bowl with much more discipline and control if they are to progress on to Southern League cricket in future years.
Both the First XI and Thirds had their matches postponed due to the rain.