IT REMAINS extremely tight at the top of Derbyshire County League Division Five South following the latest round of matches over the weekend.
Yoxall still lead the division by the most slender of margins following a massive 181-run victory over strugglers Derby Congs 2nds, and they have Muhammad Nadeem (103) and Josh Foster (93) to thank in large part for their success.
Nadeem, who smashed seven sixes and seven fours during an impressive 92-ball display, held the early part of Yoxall’s innings together with his early partners struggling against the bowling of Shahzad Nawaz (2-66) and Navneet Thandi (3-59).
Yoxall reached 76 for 4, thanks solely to Nadeem, who finally found a willing partner in Foster and together they added a quick-fire 103 for the fifth wicket.
Nadeem’s excellent innings was finally ended by an Ansar Maqsood run out but Foster powered on to a 67-ball innings of 93 before becoming Thandi’s third victim with the score on 240.
He hit no fewer than 10 sixes along the way, adding 61 for sixth wicket with Jack Watkins, who finished unbeaten on 32.
Maqsood (2-43) and Sajid Aziz (2-49) met with success late on but by then Yoxall were out of sight, posting a formidable 269.
After the break Naeem Nawaz Raja (4-24) enjoyed early success, as did Joe Cockeram (4-24), and Congs were soon floundering.
They slumped to 52-6 and there was no way back.
Sohaib Mohammed (19) resisted stoutly and almost forced a draw but Foster (2-23) was on hand to wrap up matters with the home side all out for a meagre 88 in the 45th over.
UTTOXETER maintained their challenge with a comfortable win over ALREWAS 2NDS, who fell well short chasing the home side’s modest 171-7.
James Fern (24) batted well enough at the top of the Alrewas order but his colleagues struggled as Ben Brown (5-9) and Adam Johnson (2-22) bowled Uttoxeter to an easy victory.
Only Ross Burr was able to join Fern in posting a double-figure contribution as Alrewas crashed to 66 all out.
Earlier in the afternoon Tim Watson (3-38) had exerted early pressure after Alrewas had won the toss but Mick Hall (68no) responded for the hosts and he eventually found good support in both Brown (20) and John Milward (18no).
ROLLESTON 2NDS are just two points off the lead in third after easing to victory over LULLINGTON PARK 3RDS at the Willows.
Park skipper Richard Jones won the toss and elected to bat but Andy Cooper (3-35) and veteran medium pacer John Thomson (3-34) claimed early wickets and the visitors slipped to 29-3.
Jones himself (26) then stopped the rot with surviving opener Will Roobottom (45) and the score improved to 74 before Jones fell to Mark Bellm.
Dan Hugill (36) then powerfully helped Roobottom to add a further 49 for the fifth wicket but both fell in quick succession and the innings stalled.
A late rally from Tom Fern (19) took the final tally from 126-7 to a closing 149-8.
Early wickets for Lullington were a priority after the break but none materialised and Rolleston romped to a 10-wicket win inside 24 overs, with prolific openers Tom Yates (72no) and Louis Burrows (75no) encountering few difficulties.
Unfortunately, WINSHILL’S match against newcomers Risley was a victim of the weather and they slip back two places to ninth as a result.
Bottom-of-the-table TUTBURY 2NDS remain 18 points adrift after a poor batting display against Rolls Royce 2nds resulted in a fairly heavy 71-run defeat for the Mill side.
A good start by Mohammed Ayub (23) and Omar Yussean (42) was eventually the difference between the two sides with Royces reaching a healthy 66-1.
Zishan Ahmed (5-31), alongside both Ben Winson (2-44) and Raheem Akram (2-41), kept Tutbury in the match with the visitors restricted to a very reachable 153 all out.
However, a poor start after the break did little for Tutbury’s cause and they slumped to a disappointing 82 all out. Mohammed Irfan (2-17) reduced the hosts to a dire 2-3 and Tutbury failed to respond.
Only Jason Yates (34), Colin Skitrall (14) and Winson (17) reached double figures as Alastair Maxwell (4-25) and Faizanul Malooq (3-18) confirmed Royces’ superiority.