Audlem's encounter with Betley at the delightful Church View ground ended in a comprehensive defeat for the visitors. Betley who were already assured promotion with a top two spot took the spoils with a 7 wicket victory against their nearest challengers. The defeat for Audlem means that they now drop out of the top two as Newcastle & Hartsill won their game to put themselves in second place with just one game of the season to go.
Audlem travelled with a strong team hoping to emulate the earlier victory against their illustrious hosts at The Gorse Croft back in July but things didn't go to plan from the start with skipper Chris Shenton losing the crucial toss and being asked to bat on what looked like a bowler friendly track.
The visitors started brightly against a strong bowling attack and reached 71 for 4 in good time with useful contributions coming from Chris Shenton (25), Phil Cottrell (16 ), Dave Parkinson ( 19 ), and Ron Paul ( 12 ) but the other 7 batsmen could only muster 10 runs between them to conclude the innings on 84 all out in only 24.5 overs. A fine bowling performance from the hosts headed by Luke Taylor who claimed 4 key wickets for only 5 runs in his 4 over spell.
Audlem were hoping to get the same sort of variable bounce the Betley bowlers extracted from wicket but once again Luke Taylor became a thorn in the side for the visitors. This time opening the batting and dispatching the Audlem attack to all parts to finish on 31 not out as the hosts cantered to a well earned victory in only 16 overs. Callum McIlveen was the pick of the bowlers with commendable figures of 8 overs 2 wickets for 31 runs.
Betley were worthy champions leading the division for most of the season and Audlem are still in with a chance of joining them next season but will need results to go their way to gain promotion as runners up.
Audlem Cricket Club