WEEK six of the North Devon Holiday Homes Cricket League produced a number of eye catching" results. Three league records were broken, one game resulted in a thrilling penultimate over outcome, while another ended in unsavoury circumstances with a side f
WEEK six of the North Devon Holiday Homes Cricket League produced a number of "eye catching" results.Three league records were broken, one game resulted in a thrilling penultimate over outcome, while another ended in unsavoury circumstances with a side facing just a single ball before declaring their innings at 0-0 to concede the match.Bude opening pair of Andrew De Rosa and Ben Purcell broke the first wicket partnership record of 335 scored in 2004 by Sandford duo Richard Foan and Matt Theedom. They put on 338 for the first wicket in the home game with Victoria Park II. De Rosa went on to finish unbeaten on 244 - also a new record - passing the previous Division Four best by James Starkey, who hit an unbeaten 235 for North Devon against Lynton & Lynmouth II in 2006.Skipper Purcell was eventually out for 85 and the Bude innings ended on 388-2, but credit must be given to the visiting side who also put bat to ball with great effect before their innings closed on 281-7. Andy Oliver made the biggest contribution with 54, while Chris Walker - making his debut for Bude after moving to the area from Kent - claimed 3-62. Sam Hockin also picked up a brace of wickets.The other "record" to fall came in the Division Five game at Halberton, where Weare Giffard's visiting pair of Charlie Williams (61no) and Tony Pickard (35no) added 101 for the ninth wicket. This beat the division's previous best set by S Reynolds and A Westaway of Westleigh in 2001. The only higher ninth wicket partnership throughout the five-division league came in 1996, when the late order pair J Parkinson and C Withey of Lord Tankards put on 125.In Division One, Filleigh beat visiting Sandford by 34 runs and have joined Bradninch as the early season top-flight leaders. Mark Prideaux (92), Martin Collier (33) and Jaz Kalsi (27) combined to help their side to 218 before James Hill (5-18) and John Hickman (3-31) got to work to bowl out the visitors for 184. The other top-flight game was at Beaford, where another Stuart Rhodes century helped North Devon claim a second win of the season.In Division Two, Hatherleigh are joint top of the fledgling table after a big win at home to Bratton Fleming. South African Houston Engel hit an unbeaten 145 and Roberta Cockwill chipped in with 41 as the home side scored a commanding 281-7. Then, despite an excellent century from Andrew Payne, the reply closed on 185 with Tamsin Rogers claiming 5-26.Ilfracombe were playing First Division cricket last year and have not yet settled into life in Division Two. They were beaten for a third successive time, falling to a huge home defeat at the hands of Barnstaple & Pilton II who posted a score of 214-8, thanks mainly to Andrew Barton's 69. Henry McEndoo then wove some magic to claim 5-15 and help bundle the hosts out for a meagre 45.Victoria Park launched their season and tasted defeat, beaten at home by early joint leaders Heathcoat who led with a 34 run win. The Mid Devon side were bowled out for 163, 101 of which came from their overseas player. Mike Cashmore bagged 5-26 and Andy Jeffrey took 3-40, but only Steve Oliver (26) could get to grips with some accurate visiting bowling and the reply floundered on 129.Bratton Fleming claimed a thrilling single wicket victory over nine-man Morebath who were bowled out for 168 thanks to the efforts of Tom Batson (3-21), Ollie Hunt (3-29) and Pete Simmons (2-21). Then, after a fine early knock of 58 from Graham Barrow, the reply got into all sorts of trouble before the tail wagged sufficiently for last pair - 14-year-old James Thomas (3no) and Neil Ayre (12no) - to see their side to victory.North Devon II fell to a seven-wicket defeat at Incorrigibles and Holsworthy were well beaten at Shobrooke Park, where the home side scored an imposing 317-6. Duncan Edwards claimed a brace of wickets but then only John Tidball (24) could manage to get amongst the runs and the reply closed on 109.In Division Four - apart from that stunning opening partnership that was the talk of the Bude win over Victoria Park II - there was also a "heavily discussed" finish at Bishops Nympton. The home side, facing Bideford II's 253-9, faced just one ball sent down by the visitors' 14-year-old opening bowler before declaring at 0-0 and therefore conceding the game. Neither side was prepared to speak officially after the game and the match result sheet will go into the league with that 0-0 declared the second innings total.North Devon III were nine-wicket winners over Kelseymen who were shot out for 104 with only Martin Lewis (26) making any impression with the bat. The ball was in command as 15-year-old Jack Gordon spun his way to 3-16 and fellow youngster, Fergus O'Donnell, bagged a brace of wickets. Lewis took the only wicket to fall as the home side cruised to a nine-wicket win with Tom Ansell unbeaten at the close on 47 and skipper Dan Payne also there with 26.Shebbear won a third successive game and they are the early leaders following a six-wicket win at home to Lynton & Lynmouth II. Ed Beer hit 65 of his side's 139, passed by the hosts for the loss of just four wickets, led home by Ollie Wicket (73) and Richard Hoskins (23).Division Five saw Weare Giffard lose their proud unbeaten record. The villagers only joined the league last season and powered their way to the Division Six title at the first attempt. They fell to a first defeat since joining the league when they went down by a single wicket at Halberton. But in true champion manner, they did not go down without a fight. At 140-8, Giffard were in deep trouble but then their tail-enders delivered the record-breaking partnership to take the closing total to 239-8. It wasn't enough, Halberton winning by a single wicket, off the penultimate ball of the game. That delivery was pushed into the covers and as the last pair ran the single that would deliver victory, a superb throw missed the stumps by a whisker and flew to the boundary confirming Halberton as the winners.Barnstaple & Pilton III were beaten by Nomansland by four wickets despite knocks of Will Speed (42) and Simon Pim (33).