Leverington celebrating remarkable turnaround after last-gasp derby victory over March III
REJUVENATED Leverington continued their remarkable winning-run as the cricket club’s chairman steered his side to a thrilling final-over victory over rivals March III.
With wickets tumbling around him, Adam Fairbrother held his nerve to score two runs from the last over and stretch his table-topping side’s winning streak to four games.
It has been an incredible turnaround for Leverington who looked on the verge of collapse last season - only managing to field eight players in their final fixture.
But after moving from the West Norfolk League to the Cambs League, the club have gained players and currently occupy top spot in the Junior 2A Division.
Chairman Fairbrother, a Leverington player for almost 18 years, said: “For three or four years it was very much touch and go as to whether we could keep going. The turnaround has been quite vast in the last eight months.
“There was a serious point when we could have folded completely because we didn’t have the commitment from players but now we are top of the league and it’s going well.”
Leverington looked to have secured another convincing win in Saturday’s Fenland derby, as John Gill (3-34), Aaron Cobb (3-29) and James Barnard (2-26) helped restrict March to 130-9.
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Jacques Steynberg (25) and James Dod (26) got Leverington off to a good start in reply but March’s bowlers - led by Matt Hubbard (4-23) - hit back.
Fairbrother batted patiently for 21 not out off almost 18 overs - hitting the winning runs with just one wicket and four balls remaining in a dramatic finish at Neale-Wade Community College.
“One silly shot and it’s all over so of course I was nervous,” said Fairbrother. “But I was quite confident when I was on strike because I’d been in a long time.
“Whatever league you play in and whatever sport you play, you want to do the best you can. We’ve won four from four and, apart from Saturday, we have won them quite comfortably.
“When you move into a league, you never know what you’re going to get. With what we have got, I’d be disappointed if we weren’t there or thereabouts.
“It’s certainly one of the strongest teams we’ve had. We’ve got 15 players that we can exchange and it won’t make too much difference - it’s a good squad not just a good team.
“Coming out of the West Norfolk League has been the best thing we’ve ever done. When you start like we have, you become the talk of the league.”