Dyer holds his nerve as Spa overcome Ashorne to bolster their title chances

Ashorne's Mark Reading appeals in vain for the wicket of Leamington's Shaun Williams. Picture: Morris Troughton
Ashorne's Mark Reading appeals in vain for the wicket of Leamington's Shaun Williams. Picture: Morris Troughton

Leamington 4ths boosted their Cotswold Hills Division Three title chances with a dramatic three-wicket win at fellow high-flyers Ashorne in a contest that went to the final over.

Ashorne opted to have first use of the batting track and Ben Freeman opened the innings in devastating fashion, finding the boundary with ease early on.

His fellow opener Andy Horley fell cheaply for nine and Tom Hussleby did not hang around for long as he departed for six.

Captain Mark Reading joined Freeman who passed his fifty only to fall two balls later for a very well constructed 53.

James Cutts looked at upping the run rate only to be bowled through the gate by the impressive Tom Bate and when Chris Terry was the fifth man out for a run-a-ball 20, Ashorne’s good start looked to be getting way from them.

Debutant Kevin Tobin hit a huge six before being one of five men to go in quick succession, with Reading (51) the last man out on 201 having passed 500 runs for the season.

Anthony Sunny maintained his recent excellent form, earning four for 45 and the reliable Mark Davison claimed three wickets.

Ashorne opened the bowling with spin from both ends in the form of Freeman and Reading as they looking at soaking up early pressure.

However, it was not until Cutts was brought into the attack that a wicket fell, with Richard Bate well caught at gully off his first delivery.

Toby Askin, who had never looked comfortable against the hostile pace and swing of Cutts, was then bowled through the gate for 13.

Davison joined his skipper Shaun Williams and the duo rotated the strike well, picking off the odd boundary.

Davison was dismissed by Hussleby for 42 and in the next over Reading bowled Williams for a very patient 27.

Steve Dyer, having started the season opening the batting in the first team, came in at five and looked completely at ease at the crease despite wickets falling round him and he saw Leamington over the line off the penultimate ball of the innings, finishing unbeaten on 31.