PLYMSTOCK raced to a seven-wicket win over Stoke Gabriel after skittling the villagers for 128.
Stoke looked in reasonable shape at 123 for five thanks to runs from skipper Jack Tolley (25) and Jake Robinson (32).
Stoke’s problem until then had been scoring runs as, apart from one Billy Gibson over that went for a dozen, Plymstock gave nothing away. At the 30-over mark the score was just 75 for five.
Robbie Cunningham, Max Thomas and Tom Mitch were particularly hard to score against.
With time ticking down Plymstock skipper James Nicholls threw the old ball to Hallam Kerton with instructions to wrap things up.
Kerton obliged by booking five wickets for 20 runs to send Stoke nosediving from 123 for five to 128 all out all on his own.
The run chase was a brief affair that was concluded in the 23rd over. Josh Sumner (35) and Alex Karvelas (58) got up to 119 for three, which left Kerton (10no) and Josh Hocken (3no) to finish the task.
Nicholls said the bowlers made it easy for the batters by keeping Stoke in check over after over.
“Robbie and Max were brilliant and were backed-up really well by Tom Mitch,” said Nicholls.
“Then Hal came on and blew their lower order away, although 42 extras – mainly wides – shows we still have a fair bit of improvement in us.”
Nicholls said the top three created a platform for Karvelas to win it in a hurry.
“Ali, who has just been selected to play for Greece in their T20 World Cup qualifiers, went absolutely bananas with some brutal hitting,” said Nicholls.
That’s three wins on the spin now for Plymstock and no points dropped so far. Nicholls is not getting over-excited just yet,.
“It is a great start, but we still have an awful lot of hard yards to put in as there are some very good sides in this division,” said Nicholls.
Tolley, the Stoke captain, said it was a bad example of history repeating itself and he would prefer not to see it again.
“Just like our first game against Plymouth we didn't bat well enough and 128 was never enough,” said Tolley.
"Plymstock bowled very well and had lots of good bowlers who executed plans well.
“I shouldn't have got out after getting myself in, so I take the blame for our mid-inning collapse.
“Jake did well – and got a good ball – but other than that we didn't do enough with the bat.
“With the ball we didn't execute our plans anywhere near as well as Plymstock did but credit to their batsmen, they batted well and didn't give us many chances, and put the bad balls to the boundary.”
KINGSBRIDGE snatched an unlikely 14-run win against South Devon in a C Division West nail-biter at the Butts.
Will Dorey made a top score of 62 not out for Kingsbridge in their 45-over tally of 181 for eight.
After openers James Westlake (37) and Freddie Ford (13) got Kingsbridge away to a 54-run start, Dorey batted through to the end. Dorey put on 42 for the sixth wicket with Aaron Chandler, whose contribution was just five!
South Devon did their cause no good by giving away 37 extras – 32 of them in wides.
Spinner Dave Knowles bowled straighter than most of his South Devon colleagues to claim four Kingsbridge wickets for 23 runs.
South Devon’s run chase was anchored by Noah Rider, who went in at 19 for one and chipped away at the deficit with support from Matt Beasant (18) and Knowles (19) on his way to 92.
South Devon slipped behind the clock as the overs ticked down and with five to go needed 37 to win.
At 161 for six South Devon were just about in the game. Then the wheels fell off!
Four wickets went dowb for six runs added and South Devon were all out for 167.
Kingsbridge’s bowlers shared the wickets around with three for Freddie Weir and two each for Ford, Richie Carr and Maxwell, whose stats included Rider.
That’s three defeats in a row now for South Devon, which skipper James Allen rightly described as ‘a disappointing start to the season’.
Allen added: “This one was probably a little harder to take than Ashburton last week.
“I felt like we were in control for a large part of the game but lacked that killer instinct.
“I thought our spinners looked good in spells and we fielded well as a unit.
One positive to take is how well Noah Rider batted. For a lad not quite 18 yet his maturity is fantastic.”
THREE wickets each for Jonathan Malan and Ben Grove bowled Yelverton to a 34-run win over Cornwood at Langton Park.
The Corns were set 152 to win but only got as far as 117 before they were bowled out.
Grove (3-22) and Hadleigh Scott-Kirk (2-13) got into Cornwood’s top order as the visitors slumped to 51 for six in reply.
Ewan Grewal got his head down to make 51 and was the last man out having gone in at 41 for five.
Malan (3-26) mopped up at the end with the final three wickets.
Earlier, Yelverton had been bowled out for 151 with more than three overs unused.
The Moorlanders looked in dreadful shape at 48 for five having been spun out by Lee Baker’s five-wickets-for-eight-runs spell.
Richard Townsend (22) stopped the rot for a while then Mike Lemmings batted through to the end for 35 not out, which gave Yelverton a defendable total.
AMIR Patel and Ollie Parsons batted Plymouth 2nd XI into a winning position against Paignton at Mount Wise.
Patel anchored the Plymouth innings with a patient 81 and put on 155 with Parsons (71) for the second wicket.
A further 46 went on the board while Alex Hill (32no) batted with Patel as Plymouth reached 248 for three.
No Paignton bowler took more than one wicket, although Steve George and Sam Woodcock both operated at less than four an over.
Paignton’s chase did not look in good shape at 20 for three after a going over from Jack Hughes (3-40) and not even a quickfire ton from Connor Bryan could repair the damage as wickets fell at the other end.
Woodcock (25) made the only other significant contribution to the chase as Paignton got as far as 215 with 14 balls to go.
KARL Blackburn and Carl Woolnough steered Teignmouth & Shaldon to a four-wicket win over Ashburton.
Ashburton made 219 for seven in their 45 overs and at 105 for five in reply with Todd Ballman just out for 25 and Ruben Minaar long gone for 29 the chase was in danger of wobbling.
Blackburn (45no) and James Chadwick (25) made a 56-run hole in the deficit then skipper Woolnough (41no) helped Blackburn go the rest of the way.
Earlier, former captain Ashley Berry had been Ashburton’s anchorman with an uber-patient 53 not out off 108 balls.
Along the way Berry put on 69 with Dan Coles (37) and 58 unbroken with Ryan May.