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Lymington CC let down by brittle batting for a second week in a row

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Southern Premier League Premier Division

Bournemouth CC I 183-7
Lymington CC I 165

FOR the second game in a row, Lymington's tight bowling performance was let down by a lacklustre batting display by the middle order as they slid to a disappointing 18-run defeat against Bournemouth.

Glorious summer weather at a picturesque Chapel Gate gave the indication the cricket season had begun in earnest. However, batting was challenging throughout, with the three highest-scoring players failing to score more than 50.

Lymington captain Matt Metcalfe, playing his first game since September 2019, won the toss and elected to field. Metcalfe (2-20) dispelled any notion of rustiness by quickly slotting into his typically tight groove and removing two of the top four batsmen.

Lymington's leading wicket-taker and captain Matt Metcalfe made a long-awaited return
Lymington's leading wicket-taker and captain Matt Metcalfe made a long-awaited return

Bournemouth slipped to 48-3 in 17 overs before Luke Webb (44) steadied the ship. Captain Chris Park (43) and Rob Pack (36 not out) then put on 52 runs for the seventh wicket, but they never got on top of the Lymington bowling.

Overseas player Ximus du Plooy, with his off-spin, impressed during his 10 overs, finishing with three wickets for 28 runs. The other wicket-takers were Josh Proctor (1-44) and Josh Royan (1-29), who bowled tidily at the death.

Wicketkeeper Luke Mortimer had a hard time behind the stumps with the heat, but hopes were high with Bournemouth all out for 183 in 50 overs.

As in the previous week, Lymington got off to a solid if unspectacular start with much playing and missing. Youngsters Mortimore (27) and Dan Cox (46) put on 75 runs for the first wicket. After giving Lymington the initiative, the game then dramatically changed when Mortimore was run out with a direct hit from Edward Denham, who only had one stump to aim for.

The Lymington batting then ran aground as 10 wickets fell for 90 runs with Bournemouth bowlers Denham (4-44), Jake Hurley (2-48) and Rob Pack (3-17) taking control.

The collapse came after Josh Royan (14), Metcalfe (13) and Du Plooy (24) tried in vain to hold the middle order together. However, their attempts were undone when they kept losing partners as Lymington finished 18 runs short with two balls remaining.

Lymington CC's Premier Division campaign continues on Saturday against South Wilts CC at home at 11.30am.

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