Excited Cutthorpe are on the brink of promotion to the Derbyshire Premier League for the first time after a sensational victory over fellow high-fliers Duffield.
A magnificent spell of bowling by Josh Savage, who took 7-29 in 12.2 overs, demolished Duffield, who were rolled out for just 63 to set up a nine-wicket win for the hosts.
Now Cutthorpe sit only two points behind leaders Rolleston in the First Division of the Derbyshire County League. And with a 36-point gap back to third spot, they ned only 19 pointsw from their last two games -- away to Ilkeston Rutland and at home to Clifton -- to guarantee a place in the top flight.
Duffield arrived at the Recreation Ground still harbouring promotion hopes of their own and so, on winning the toss, their skipper, Paul Bakel, decided to bat in an attempt to control the game and gain maximum points.
They were given an apparent boost too when the home side’s regular opening bowler, Asad Butt, was late arriving -- only for his replacement, Andrew Knowles, to strike three early blows.
Knowles (3-32 in 12 overs) made full use of his chance with the new ball, having one opener, Tim Williscroft, caught at cover, and bowling the other, Chris Sheldon. He then had Mayur Patel caught at first slip by Matt Cluer for nought to leave Duffield reeling on 20-3.
The rest of the innings belonged to Savage, who blew away the visitors’ middle and lower order with a devastating burst of seven wikckets for 11 runs in only 39 deliveries.
His ninth over, in particular, was something to behold. With the first ball, he bowled Duffield’s overseas player, Ben Patterson, for a duck. His second and third balls beat new batsmen Oliver Webb all ends up. The fourth ball found the edge of Webb’s bat, only to be dropped at second slip and go for four. Savage’s next ball trapped Webb lbw and the last removed Jono Clare with an unplayable yorker, leaving Duffield on 49-8!
Savage proceeded to clean up the tail, leaving Cutthorpe’s batsmen with the academic task of knocking off the runs. Cluer (20, four fours) and skipper David Bush (29 not out, five fours) ensured there were no alarms with an opening stand of 47, and Bush provided a fitting finale with a six.