GREAT Bedwyn skipper John Palmer was chuffed to see his side kick off the new season with a derby victory over near-neighbours Marlborough at Frog Lane last weekend.
A half-century from Rob Palmer and three-wicket hauls from Max Andrews and Sean Palmer helped Bedwyn carve out a 47-run victory to get their Wiltshire Division campaign off to a positive start.
“We’d had quite a lot of rain in the week so it made it quite a low-scoring game – I thought that 139 was a good score from us in the first innings,” said the Bedwyn captain.
“The wicket actually got better for them but I thought we restricted them really well with some really good catches.
“Our catching and fielding is something that we've worked on a lot so hopefully we'll see the benefits of that this season.
“We know a lot of the Marlborough players because we've played against them for a long time and it's always nice to win a derby game.”
Marlborough put their hosts in to bat first and piled on the pressure as George Fox, Fraser Gordon and Ben Head all took two wickets apiece but Rob Palmer (55) and Andrews (28) helped Bedwyn post 139-9.
Head (23) attempted to get Marlborough’s run chase on the go but visiting skipper Tom Norris (15) was the only other man to reach double figures for his side as the home side’s Sean Palmer (3-9) and Andrews (3-18) struck, with Norris’ men skittled for 92 in the 36th over.
“We bowled too many wides and no-balls, as well as dropping some crucial catches,” said the Marlborough captain.
“Our batting lacked discipline and there was some poor shot selection. It was a very disappointing performance but we were beaten by the better team.”
Devizes also got the season under way with a victory as they won by four wickets at Nationwide.
John Dunford claimed five wickets as the hosts were skittled for 114 midway through the 43rd over before captain Joe Wookey led his side to victory with an unbeaten knock of 57.
James Langan added 20 as Devizes reached 115-6 in the 36th over.
Daniel Wootton hit an unbeaten 86 as Burbage and Easton Royal beat Calne by 40 runs.
David Cope chipped in with a healthy 68 as Burbage were all out for 189 in the 45th over, with the visitors’ Sean Adams and Tom Crosby taking three wickets apiece.
George Sykes (43) and Adams (39) offered some resistance but the bowling of captain Tom Wallbridge, Nick Cook and Adam Lavis, who all claimed three wickets, saw Calne all out for 149 early in the 46th over.
Marshfield also ended the first weekend of the new season with a victory after notching up a five-wicket triumph over Winsley.
FOR MORE SPORTS NEWS, REPORTS & PICTURES SEE THURSDAY'S GAZETTE & HERALD AND FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @gazsport