Horton brothers turn up the heat for Holmewood
The Horton brothers starred for again for Holmewood, who picked up a vital win at Third Division promotion-chasers Belper Meadows in the Derbyshire County League.
Gavin Horton’s unbeaten knock of 69 was the mainstay of Holmewood’s 178-8, an innings that had started strongly but nearly descended into chaos, before younger brother Jamie took 5-29 as Belper were skittled for just 84.
Botswana captain Karabo Motlhanka (22) and batting heavyweight Phil Stone (29) got the visitors off to a solid start, putting on 46 for the first wicket before both were dismissed in quick succession by the persistent Robert Borland (3-26 in 14 overs).
Borland struck again to remove Jack Jarvis, while young left-arm seamer Daniel Kelly (3-35 in 14) turned in an impressive spell of swing bowling as Belper claimed six wickets for just 22 runs to leave the visitors tottering at 68-6.
Gavin Horton went about rebuilding the Holmewood innings, putting on 30 with brother Jamie (13) and then bossing a tremendous, unbeaten ninth-wicket stand of 80 with James Taylor that salvaged a perilous 98-7 with just 11 overs left. Taylor (24no) sought to provide as much of the strike as possible to Horton, who unleashed a fine of array of attacking shots to propel Holmewood’s total to the realms of respectability.
Straight after the tea break, Jamie Horton tore into Belper’s reply. The medium-pacer bowled full and straight to bag four lbw victims in an exceptional 12-over spell and claimed his five-wicket haul courtesy of a diving legside catch by wicketkeeper Motlhanka.
Horton’s spell was supported by veteran Matt Ryalls (3-37 in 12 overs), who extracted late movement from the fuller of his lengths to remove the dangerous Michael Cox (19). When Ryalls stuck for the third time, the hosts’ innings had subsided to 58-9.
The last pair of Ben Mills (25) and Matthew Jones (11) staged an impressive rearguard defence, chewing through almost 15 overs, before Jarvis’s mystery spin extracted an aggressive shot from Mills that found Mark Devine at mid-on.