The first Saturday of the Premier League season meant games for five of Hunts six Premier League teams
- Credit: Archant
LEFT arm quick bowler Sam Rippington was the toast of Cricketfield Lane on Saturday after his five wickets helped Ramsey secure a winning start and a maximum 25 points to their Hunts & Cambs TuckerGardner Premier One season against Castor & Ailsworth.
“We are very happy with that,” said the chairman David Swannell. “You can only beat what’s put in front of you.
“It was the most convincing win of the opening day I think – and a maximum 25 points.
“I’ve known Sam Rippington for four or five years and he gets wickets in clumps – he could get another five this week and then might not get any for a couple of weeks. But it was a fine performance from him.”
Ramsey won the toss and the new captain Taylor West elected to bat and, despite a slow start, good knocks from Michael Cafferkey (62) and West (69) helped their team to a total of 212-7.
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Luke Stewart chipped in with 26 with West and Michael Kay compiling a vital eighth-wicket stand of 42.
Kay then ripped the heart out of Castor’s top order, removing the captain Rob Vitas with only the second ball of the innings and Australian Luke Broekman in a miserly spell of 2-25 in 10 overs.
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David Carlaw was even more tight-fisted, with a spell of 1-5 from seven overs, including a wicket in his first.
Castor never recovered and following the introduction of Rippington to the attack, they rolled over with the 18-year-old taking his five wickets for 23 runs which included an 18-ball spell of 5-6. Cafferkey joined in the fun to blow away the tail with two wickets of his own.
St Ives Town also made a winning start to their season beating Sawston with batsman Matthew Durrant and bowler Paul Swannell in stunning form at the Outdoor Centre.
Durrant scored 106 as St Ives posted 193 before Swannell, on his debut, took six wickets for 45 runs with two maidens from 10.1 overs.
However, fellow bowler Kevin Sequenzer’s figures of three wickets for the loss of just four runs from sevens overs with five maidens was just as impressive in the 52-run win.
Warseley lost their first match in Premier One after winning promotion at the end of last season. They were beaten by Wisbech Town who posted 228 with Laurence Frederick’s mid-order knock of 34 the best the home side could muster as they were whittled away for 150.
Elsewhere, March won their opener at home to Camden with Nassington and last year’s champions Foxton drawing.
Eaton Socon marked their return to the Premier League with a draw against Fordham. But they could have won the game had they not struggled to get rid of the final Fordham batsman in the last four overs.
“That was slightly disappointing,” said the captain Terry Day. “But if you had offered us 16 points at the start of the day we would have taken them, so that’s good.
“I thought we were pretty comfortable really – it didn’t feel like too much of a step up.”
After losing the toss, Eaton were asked to bat and openers Joe Donnelly (37), Paul Field (33), plus No 3 Dave Humphrey (22) set a solid base with Ray Tudor (25), Jonny Carpenter (45) and Joe Dawborn (51 not out) all batting well for an impressive total of 230-5
Ben Gowling took an early wicket for Eaton but Ian Baldwin’s 59 and Joel Gilmour’s 40 held up Eaton’s progress and, despite a fine spell from Dawborn (5-27), Eaton were unable to take the final Fordham wicket for an opening-day victory with the last pair surviving four overs to eek out the draw.
“To be fair, the other teams in the division got 120 or less so for us to get 130 was quite a good effort really,” said Day.
Warboys, in their second season at this level, made an excellent start to their Premier Two campaign with a six-wicket victory at Abington.
The hosts were bowled out for 117 in 46 overs with Chris Whitfield (3-5), Sam Latchford (3-22) and Matthew Cooksey (2-32) in among the wickets.
In reply, both openers fell cheaply but Whitfield (43 not out) and Cooksey (37) scored the bulk of the runs to seal the victory in just 28.1 overs.
Saffron Walden (who beat Hardwick & Coldecote), Histon (Yaxley), Newborough (Ickwell) and Weston Colville (Khalsa) all made winning starts to their seasons.