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Dial's ton helps Lechlade back to the top
BRAD Dial’s second century of the season helped Lechlade back to the top of the WEPL Glos/Wilts Division table, as the visitors beat Tewkesbury by 102 runs.
With title rivals Rockhampton and Biddestone both losing, Dial propelled Lechlade back to the summit with a sumptuos unbeaten 121 from 107 balls in a little over two hours at the creas, as the Manor Ground outfit reached 230-6 declared before bowling their hosts out for just 128.
It wasn’t all plain sailing for Lechlade who, after being inserted to bat after losing the toss, wobbled from 70-1 from 18 overs to 87-4 in 25, as Will Nichols, Joe Breet and Ryan Higgins fell cheaply.
However, South African under 19 international Dial steaded the ship, weighing anchor in the middle order and sharing partnerships of 52 with Arran Dickinson and 91 with Oli Thornley. Having completed his ton off 99 balls, Dial quickly added another 20 to leave Lechlade in a position to declare, and he remained not out with 12 fours and five big sixes at the conclusion of the innings.
The brave declaration by captain Breet paid off, as Tewkesbury found scoring difficult. The opening seam pair of Michael Craigs and Luke Sellers went for just 21 runs from their first 11 overs before Asanka Vithanage claimed the first wicket of the innings, as Sam Baldock stumped Freddie Humphreys.
Nichols followed up with the wicket of Warren Deeming and, when Vithanage dismissed Stuart Tame, Tewkesbury were struggling at 44 for 3. The hosts rallied to 100-5 off 34 overs but never looked like threatening the Lechlade total.
Vithanage and Sellers cleaned up the tail, with the former returning figures 3-10, while Nichols took 4-39.
Breet said after the game: “The declaration was vindicated as we secured a comfortable win today. Brad batted very well but some credit should be given to Oli and Arran who both batted for the team both giving Brad as much of the strike as possible.
“Again the bowling unit were fantastic with Luke and Michael applying the pressure with Sanks (Vithanage) and Willy picking up the wickets as a result. All in all I am very pleased with the team’s performance today and the result.”