By Dan Carpenter
Melksham bounced back from their horror show the previous week to hammer Biddestone 3s by 143 runs away from home, with captain Joe Veacock and Matt Hunt leading the charge with a pair of magnificent centuries.
Winning the toss and batting first, the visitors may have begun to fear a repeat of their last game when opener Daniel Carpenter departed for just 7 at the start of the 6th over, leaving his side on 15-1. Fellow opener Tom Wallis was then joined by Hunt who between them were able to steady the ship, until Wallis himself was then bowled for 24 with the score standing at 45-2. This ushered the arrival of Veacock to the crease, who straight from the first ball of his innings set about demolishing the Biddestone bowlers in a brilliant display of brutal big hitting. Suddenly the score was catapulting along, with Veacock unrelenting in his aggressive approach whilst Hunt superbly held up the other end whilst making his own regular contributions the score. Soon enough the former was able to chalk up his 2nd century of the season, taking just 51 balls to reach the landmark. Veacock eventually reached an enormous score of 154 before being caught, cementing a partnership of 241 with Hunt and leaving his team with a total at 286-3. With 7 overs still to go, there was still no let up for the tormented Biddestone fielders. Hunt continued to build upon the good work of himself and his former partner, eventually carving out a first century for the club for himself with more big hitting, finishing on 128 not out at the close of the innings. Melksham now firmly had control of the game, finishing on a colossal 355-4, hugely indebted to the heroics of Veacock and Hunt.
With such an unlikely target to chase down, Biddestone did nevertheless score quickly from the start when they began their response, reaching 50 inside the first 10 overs. Ed Carver proved to be an early problem for Melksham’s opening duo of Andy Footner and Freddie Honeybone, scoring a quickfire 46 before being bowled by Footner (finishing with figures of 2-24 of 9) in the 11th over. This dismissal led to the run rate settling down, with Biddestone scampering to 138-4 of 30 overs requiring 218 runs to win in the last 15 overs. With the race to finish top of the table looking increasingly tight however, it was important that Melksham bowled their opponents all out in order to claim maximum bowling points. Once more up stepped the impressive Joe Veacock to lead one last charge, taking 3 wickets during the last few overs, with 2 runs outs and 2 catches already to his name during the 2nd innings, to dismiss Biddestone for 212 in the last over. Melksham’s latest win sees them reclaim top spot in Division 5, finishing the week with a slender 3-point lead over 2nd place Wanborough.
The club would like to thank sponsors Auto-Tech Melksham Ltd for their continued support.