TABLE-TOPPING St Ives continued their magnificent early-season form by strolling to an impressive five-wicket victory at home against reigning Tucker Gardner Premier Division One champions Camden on Saturday.

TABLE-TOPPING St Ives continued their magnificent early-season form by strolling to an impressive five-wicket victory at home against reigning Tucker Gardner Premier Division One champions Camden on Saturday.

Saints powered to their third consecutive win, which followed up on their impressive 66-run and eight-wicket victories over Foxton and Wisbech Town, respectively.

Title-chasing Camden - who had not lost in the league in over a season - were left shell-shocked as Ives' seamers ripped through their middle order.

Choosing to field first on a bowler-friendly wicket after winning the toss, Saints quickly had the champions reeling at 57-5, with opening bowlers Bevis Moynan (3-45) and Rob Setchell (4-40) doing the damage.

Camden's main resistance came from Nick Wells (39) and Simon Gardner (21) but Ives were dominant.

Off-spinner Ryan Withers (3-40) halted the comeback and the visitors limped to 142 all out.

It was a total that never looked likely to trouble Ives, as openers Tom Beale (43) and Reuan Williams (32) took the attack to the Camden bowlers.

Martin Burton (2-33) and Matt Thomas (2-15) tried their best to assert some control but patient knocks from Matt Durrant (20), Darren Fordham (15) and Richard Grieller (17 not out) eased Ives to a memorable victory.

Saints' captain Steven Smith said: "It was a great win with all the team chipping in - showing that anybody in the side can win games for us.

"I think we won the game in the first part of each innings, reducing them to 57-5 and then putting on 66 quick runs for the first wicket."

Newly-promoted St Ives' start has surpassed even their own expectations and will be looking to make it four wins on the spin this weekend when they travel to Cambridge Granta seconds.

Smith added: "We will just take each game as it comes and hope to keep winning.

"Of course we are delighted with the start we have made, beating the top two teams from last year and starting with three good wins.

"We have a lot of good young players and they will only get better."