The 1st XI emerged triumphant during their bottom-of-the-table clash against Heytesbury & Sutton Veny, winning by 108 runs victory thanks to an inspired century from Chay Forester.
The must win clash for both sides got off a fast start, with Forester wasting no time getting runs on the board. Runs failed to flow from the other end though, with first Mark Wiltshire (1) and then Tom Wallis (0) unable to get going, leaving the score at 63-2 after 14 overs.
Skipper Joe Veacock was next in at the crease, finally providing Forester with some much-needed support. Both batsmen continued to score throughout the following overs, during which Forester reached his fifty. Sadly, Veacock was then trapped LBW for 15, unable to convert his good start into a big score, leaving his side 112-3 after 27 overs.
Any hopes Heytesbury & Sutton Veny had of turning the game around after this breakthrough were soon dashed though, with Forester now kicking on to put his side firmly in control. Soon enough he reached his century, the first from any Melksham player this season, with Ross Holbrook also playing his part in killing the game with a key 25.
Both batsmen were dismissed in the final stages the innings, with Forester finishing his impressive innings on 111. The home side were able to come back strongly as the innings ended, picking up 5 wickets in the final 7 overs; but Melksham’s tail enders were able to keep the score moving, with their side reaching a commanding total of 210-9.
The host’s response started well, reaching 50 for no loss inside 13 overs: despite some at times furiously quick bowling from opener Liam Merrett. Thankfully, Joe Veacock was on hand to make the breakthrough for Melksham not long afterwards. Gary Ings picked up another during the following over and soon the visitors were flying through their opponent’s batting line up.
Rich Hemmings stepped up and produced a fine performance to effectively end the match as a contest, picking up 4 wickets for 28 runs; whilst Veacock himself finished with figures 3-16. The efforts of both bowlers left Heytesbury & Sutton Veny reeling on 89-8 off 28, helped by a tight display from everyone in the field which ensured there were few easy runs for the batsmen. In the end it was Freddie Honeybone who finished the tie off with his brief spell of 2-7, condemning Heytesbury & Sutton Veny to a measly score of 102, and ensuring Melksham clinched a crucial second win of the season.
The 2nd XI were equally as successful, earning a 47-run win over Devizes 3s. The start to the afternoon was a difficult one, with an early burst from Devizes leaving Melksham struggling on 12-3. James Bailey and Tony Trotman (21) were on hand to rescue their side though, with a fine 55 from Bailey helping to drag his side to a more respectable total of 137-9 of 45. The bowlers knew that a tight display was needed, and they duly delivered, bowling their opponents out for a mere 91 runs. Mark Mullis (3-28) and Tom Watling (2-23) led the way, whilst skipper Chris Long delivered the killing blow late on with figures of 3-6.