Top three finish on the cards for terrific Chesterfield

Opening batsman Ben Slater slams a boundary en route to a half-century for Chesterfield.
Opening batsman Ben Slater slams a boundary en route to a half-century for Chesterfield.

A finishing position in the top three of the Derbyshire County League, Premier Division is on the cards for Chesterfield after a comprehensive victory over local rivals, Eckington.

Chesterfield’s eight-wicket success, which reflected a terrific performance, enabled them to leapfrog the visitors in the table and also end their slim hopes of the title, which has been won by Sandiacre Town. Now victory in their final fixture at Denby this Saturday should see Chesterfield end up in third, or even possibly second.

On a dull and showery day at Queen’s Park, the game was reduced to 39 overs per side, and the hosts put Eckington in before bowling them out for 152. Sticking to their tried and trusted game-plan, they kept it tight early on, putting pressure on the batsmen and opening up opportunities later on for the rest of the bowling attack.

In his last game as the club’s overseas player, Josh Savage took his 53rd league wicket, but the best figures were returned by Luke Baddeley (3-20), who wrapped up the innings, and Andrew Parkin-Coates (3-34). With the notable exception of their own overseas import, Eden Links, who made 68no (six fours), Eckington had no answers.

Wicketkeeper Mykylo Bird also had a good day behind the stumps with four dismissals, and he opened Chesterfield’s reply with 23 in a stand of 44 with Ben Slater (57, two sixes and seven fours). Slater then shared a matchwinning partnership of 82, at more than a run a ball, with captain Alex Hibbert, who hit 51no.