The 1st XI produced a top-class performance at the weekend, with Adam Mitchell notching his first ton for the club to lead his side to a comfortable 133-run win away to Winsley 2s.
The skipper stole the show for the visitors with a score of exactly 100, although Russ Collins was not too far behind him with a classy 97. Their efforts helped Melksham reach a colossal total of 261-9, a total that was easily defended thanks to a solid effort in the second innings both with the ball and in the field.
Batting first after losing the toss, Melksham suffered an early setback when Chay Forester was caught for just 2 in the second over. An aggressive Mitchell was not to be deterred though; he took full advantage of some wayward Winsley bowling, hitting regular boundaries in an explosive opening period which saw him reach his fifty in just 41 balls. The other end was proving to be a different story for Melksham though. Simon Turner was caught for 12, unable to kick on after a solid start, then a lapse in awareness from Joe Veacock saw him stumped first ball to leave his side 73-3.
Having shouldered most of the run-scoring burden until this point, Mitchell was now able to relax somewhat thanks to the arrival of Collins at the crease. Melksham’s number 5 showed just as much appetite for run-scoring as his captain, bludgeoning his way to a quickfire fifty of his own during what was a match-defining 4th wicket stand of 132. The partnership was only broken when Mitchell was caught in the 34th over immediately after chalking up his century, leaving his side 205-4 off 34 overs.
With control of the game now firmly in Melksham’s grasp, a succession of lower order batsmen came and went to try and cash in on as runs as possible. During this period Collins was bowled agonisingly short of his century, whilst Lewie Simmons emerged the most effective of the tail-end batsmen with a cameo of 15 not out. By the end of the innings the visitors had reached 261-9, a total which put them firmly in control.
This supremacy was only tightened as the second innings got underway. Opening bowlers Rich Hemmings and Dan King were excellent during their first few overs, with the latter being rewarded with the opening wicket during the 7th over. From this point Winsley never gained any sufficient momentum, with a direct hit run-out from Simmons and further wicket from King (who finished 2-18 off 9) only compounding their problems.
Him and Hemmings were replaced in the attack by Liam Merrett and Mark Mullis, with the two combining well to eventually ware Winsley down. Merrett finished 2-39 and Mullis ended his spell 2-35 to leave Melksham on the cusp of victory with Winsley still miles behind the target. Soon after the long inevitable victory was signed and sealed, thanks to a late wicket a piece from Mitchell and Simmons.
What Next? The 1st XI will hope to keep their winning streak going when Westbury 2s visit Melksham House next weekend.