Five-star Fred is king for North Devon
- Credit: Fiona Tyson
Fred King claimed his first five-wicket haul for North Devon in the 30-run win over Torquay that keeps the Instow side second in the A Division table.
King followed brother Josh over from Bideford for the start of the 2019 season and has been in the first-team squad ever since.
Now Josh has joined Sandford to play Premiership cricket, there is the chance to bowl more frequently and Fred took the opportunity to scupper Torquay’s chasing plans with a five-for-72 return.
Torquay were 113 for three pursuing 237 to win in the Sandhills when King started talking wickets. Although Tom Drake kept going to make 83, King struck at the other end to rob Torquay of their supporting cast.
A target of 102 to win from the final 10 overs with five wickets down left Torquay as second favourites a long way out.
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George McEndoo (2-23) backed-up King and there was parsimonious spell of 10 overs for 21 runs from Matt Dart.
Jack Moore top scored for North Devon with 79 and was involved in a 65-run second-wicket stand with Ben Howe (43).
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Tom Popham, the North Devon captain made a patient 33 in a 50-plus partnership with Moore.
By the time Moore was spun out by Chris Kelmere the score had advanced from 17 for one to 217 for five.
Kelmere (2-49) shaded the wicket-taking stats for Torquay from Sri Lankan debutant Kesh Wijerthna (2-51). Drake and Harry Baxendale both kept the run rate below four an over when they were in action.
Skipper Popham said as the pitch favoured bowlers from both sides it was down to batters to graft for their runs and Moore’s knock helped swing it North Devon’s way.
“It wasn't a normal, very flat Devon pitch and we managed to reach a decent yet still gettable total,” said Popham.
“It wasn't a wicket where boundaries were easy to come by, as shown by the scores and strike rates in the Devon game Sunday.
“Our spinners – George McEndoo and Mart Dart – bowled superbly in tandem and Fred King put in another very impressive middle-overs spell, a role he's executing superbly.
“Jack Moore played a mature and well-timed innings, battled very hard, which was good to see, and picked the right balls to attack at the end.”
North Devon seconds were gunned down by nine wickets after being bowled out cheaply by Alphington & Countess Wear.
Second-wicket pair Reuben Windley (28) and Rob Ayre (21) took North Devon to 59 for two before disaster struck in the shape of Stuart Shaw and Jon Heaver.
Heaver (3-17) and Shaw (2-16) sent North Devon tumbling to 65 for six and it took a captain’s knock of 33 not out to get a semi-respectable total of 116 all out on the board.
Alphington openers Matt Taylor and Nick Halse made a 69-run dent in the deficit before Halse was spun away by Jack Hockin.
Taylor was still there on 53 not out when the winning post was passed in the 25th over. Tom Nightingale (19) was the other undefeated batter.
*Devon lost a 50-over NCA Cup tie against Herefordshire by 67 runs at Instow on Sunday.
Herefordshire 232-7 (N A Hammond 46, D G Ball 47, M G Pardoe 29; J S Stephens 3-47) Devon 165 (M W Thompson 59, C J Haggett 28; M G Pardoe 2-19, T A Hage 2-17).