EXMOUTH are top of the table in the Premier Division, but not by a lot, after beating North Devon by two wickets.
That’s two wins out of two for Exmouth, who are jostling with Sidmouth and Exeter at the top of the pile.
Exmouth have one more bating bonus point than Sidmouth, who level pegged with the Maer Grounders on 38 points. Exeter are a point further behind.
North Devon made 232 for seven in their 50 overs, which Exmouth knocked off after a struggle with 11 balls to spare.
Bob Dawson, the former Devon skipper, deputised for absent captain Richard Baggs and his number two Callum French.
Dawson said North Devon probably scored more runs than they were entitled to, which made the game a bit closer than it should have been.
“We were a bit disappointed they got 230, but we were a few short with Callum and Dan Pyle not around to bowl,” said Dawson.
“The good thing was we won the game without anyone making a 70 or 80, which shows the depth of batting we have in the side.
“Alvin Pollard coming in at number 10 shows how strong we are.
“In the past we have found ways to lose at North Devon so it was nice to go there and bring back a win.”
Left-hander Dan Bowser was the man of the moment for North Devon with 113 not out in their 50-over total.
Bowser, who batted at three, put on 56 with Josh King for the seventh wicket in a stand that got North Devon going after Andy Buzza (3-32) and David Lye (1-41) slowed them down mid-innings.
Sandy Allen (46) and Lye (28) got Exmouth moving in a stand of 47. Miles Lenygon (38) kept the chase going, then Buzza (43no) marshalled the bottom half of the order to wrap up victory.
North Devon skipper Matt Westaway remains confident the first win of the season isn’t far away despite two defeats on the trot.
Will it be third time lucky away to Bradninch this Saturday? Westaway hopes so.
“Exmouth bowled well up front and made scoring difficult,” said Westaway.
“Dan Bowser was the only guy to get in and his excellent 100, particularly the second 50, was fluent.
“I think we were still 30 short of where we needed to be.”
When Exmouth batted they ran into problems from time to time, but not enough to derail the chase as North Devon have bowlers working on their match fitness.
“It was good to see Josh King get through 10 overs, albeit at medium pace,” said Westaway.
“Jack Popham bowled the odd sharp delivery, so things look positive for the coming weeks.
“At eight wickets down I thought we may have had them but Exmouth bat deep. “If we continue to progress like this the first win is around the corner.”
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