KENTISBEARE 165-9 (3) lost to UPLYME & Lyme Regis 166 (16) by two wickets

SKIPPER Ashley Caddy branded the evergreen Derek Wellman “a legend” after the club president guided Uplyme & Lyme Regis to a dramatic victory at Kentisbeare in the Devon League E Division.

It was only a year ago that Wellman feared he may never play cricket again due to arthritis but having overcome the condition it appears he is now well and truly back to his awe inspiring best.

Chasing 166, Uplyme’s reply looked dead and buried on 27-5 at Rectory Park but the middle-order batsman provided the experienced head the visitors so desperately needed as he went on to score 48 not out to see his side home in the 43rd over, alongside number nine Jamie Toates (17 not out).

Caddy told Lyme Regis News: “We won the toss for the first time this season and put Kentisbeare in on a damp, green wicket. “The ground there is quite small so to restrict them to 165-9 was very pleasing.

“We bowled well, fielded well and took all our catches, and it appeared that everything was going just how we wanted it to.

“However, their two opening bowlers then produced a devastating spell and suddenly we found ourselves really up against it on 27-5.

“Then up stepped Derek and what a legend he really is. To come back from arthritis like he has done and to produce a batting display like that is just incredible. In fact, words cannot describe how pleased I am for him.

“The innings was faultless. He did not give a single chance and he accelerated the run-rate just at the right time with some fantastic sixes.

“He also inspired the likes of Sam Challis (27), Mark Brimi-combe (21) and Jamie to stick around with him and hang on in there, and to eventually get home and claim the win was an outstanding achievement.”

Caddy (2-32) and Steve Batey (3-36) were the main wicket-takers for Uplyme but it was Patrick Hobson (4-46) and Harry Howe (2-14) that really impressed with the leather by knocking over the visitors’ top-order with a devastating spell of frontline bowling.

Caddy added: “They just kept producing good deliveries and it was not until some of the shine went off the new ball that it started to become a little easier.

“It certainly was not a case of poor application from the top order. In fact, Ben Whittington was desperately unlucky with his dismissal, which saw a leg-side ball clip the bottom of his thigh pad and deflect onto the stumps.”

Uplyme entertain Kilmington on Saturday when they are expecting to welcome back Neil Price.

Caddy said: “Looking at the league table it is all pretty tight. There are only 20 points between us and the top so if we can put a run together there is no reason why we cannot get right back into it.”