​Fielding quality is key to Chesterfield’s win

​A smart performance in the field boosted Chesterfield Seconds' Derbyshire County League promotion hopes.
Jamie O'Connor's fine spell helped Chesterfield Seconds to victory.Jamie O'Connor's fine spell helped Chesterfield Seconds to victory.
Jamie O'Connor's fine spell helped Chesterfield Seconds to victory.

​They skittled Eckington for 81 inside 25 overs to land a 52-run victory in the Division Four North clash at Queen's Park.

The 22 points move them up to third in the table on 239, only one behind Belper Meadows in the second promotion spot.

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It was hardly a surprise that batters found it a struggle for most of the time, with the occasional delivery keeping low, considering it had rained for most of the previous day.

Put in, Chesterfield were indebted to a second-wicket stand of 48 between Alex Fowkes (22) and Callum Hiron (20) which steered them to 54-1.

Both drove crisply on either side of the wicket but, after they were out in quick succession, the innings went into decline.

Left-arm spinner Adam Leonard played a major part in that with a fine spell from the Pavilion End.

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Varying his flight and pace and finding plenty of spin at times, he proved a real handful.

Several batters attempted to hit him against the spin through the leg side but they had little success as he took 3-29.

He was well supported by off-spinner Marcus Hayes, who took 3-24 against his former club, and opening bowler Matt Taylor (3-35), who bowled two fine spells.Michael Michailidis battled to an invaluable 25 but Chesterfield were all out for 133.

That score looked considerably more formidable when the visitors slumped to 15-4 in the fifth over.

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Skipper Adam Woodhouse (3-28) and Jamie O'Connor (3-25), both generating a brisk pace, were rewarded for bowling straight to a generally full length.

They were helped by a fine Michailidis catch in the covers to account for Jenson Green.

Both bowlers struck again to make it 28-6 before Leonard and Taylor added 30.

Off-spinner Tim Kirk (2-19) ended that partnership by having Taylor caught by wicket-keeper Callum Hiron.

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The same duo accounted for Oliver Hume next ball before medium-pacer Matt Carrington (2-9) had Joe Atkinson caught at backward point by Kirk.

Eckington were 68-9 and Leonard went on the attack.

He pulled two enormous sixes over mid-wicket but, trying another big hit, was caught by Fowkes at deep square leg.

He had made a valiant 30 and Eckington were all out for 81.

This was the Seconds' game in hand on the sides above them in the table.

It was not played in June because of Derbyshire's visits for the Festival.

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All three Chesterfield teams had their regular weekly League matches rained off.

On Saturday the firsts are at Quarndon and the Seconds host Holmewood at Queen's Park.

Chesterfield are also in action the following day in the T20 finals at Wirksworth & Middleton while the Sunday side face Hucknall in the Mansfield & District League at Queen's Park.