MARCH Town ended a run of disappointing results in the derby games against local rivals Wisbech with a six-wicket win at Harecroft Road on Saturday.
The victory brought March 20 points and they continue to head the Cambs Tucker Premier Division by 19 points over Foxton and also a first win at Wisbech in over 10 years.
After the heavy overnight rain it was always going to be an important toss to win on a damp wicket so Chris Ringham’s afternoon started well when he was able to put Wisbech into bat.
Wisbech made just 162, as skipper Chris Ringham took the wickets of both openers Simon Freear and Ivan Burgess on his way to three for 37 and Aussie import Matt Wilcox claimed the wicket of the home side’s top-scorer Dave Wood (41) in his figures of three for 40.
Tommy Howgego captured the prize wicket of Wisbech skipper Gary Freear neatly caught by Matty Vail for 22. And together with a great run out by James Hilliard, the home side sank to 112-6 before finally being bowled out in the 46th over.
Freear had hoped early pressure on March run-machine Wilcox would pay off and they captured his wicket for just 12 runs.
But then in came Shardul Brahmbhatt, who so far this season has performed better with the ball than the bat, and he performed a one-man assault on the Wisbech bowling.
His fifty came up in just 30 balls and he had scored 71 runs off 49 balls with 13 boundaries including a six in 35 minutes at the crease by the time Freear finally had him caught and bowled.
Freear then added the scalp of Carl Chapman, who had just cut loose with two massive blows in his 21. Rob Tombs had played the ultimate foil and stroked a good 32 not out as March got home with ease.
A delighted March skipper Ringham said: “It was good to get the monkey off our back as I had not won at Wisbech in the last 10 seasons.
“Shardul was in very good form and his 50 came off 30 balls and when you are chasing 162 that’s very good. Rob Tombs and Carl Chapman also made good contributions so it was good to take some of the pressure off Matt Wilcox for a change.
“If you had said we would be leading the table coming up to the halfway stage at the start of the season I would have snatched your hand off.
“There are still a lot of games to go but if we can continue churning out good results there is no reason why we cannot win the league even if Camden and Ramsey appear to have stronger teams on paper.
“We have a run of away games now and with the school holidays coming up too it could be a difficult period for us but we have to just keep plugging away.”
Ringham also had a few words of comfort for Wisbech who are going through their poorest run of results for the last five seasons.
Ringham added: “I think Wisbech will be playing in the Premier Division next season. There are couple of very weak teams and with people like Gary Freear, David Wood, Sam Albutt and Craig Johnson I think they will be mid-table in the end.”
Freear agreed it was an important toss to win and commented: “I thought 162 was a competitive score.
“We got Matt Wilcox out fairly cheaply but Shardul came in and was in very good form. I have not seen Ramsey play this season but if March can keep going in this sort of form there is no reason why they cannot win the title.”