ELMLEY CASTLE eased their Cotswold Hills League Premier Division relegation fears by recording a crucial 39 run victory at fellow strugglers Stratford Bards on Saturday.
With a mixture of experience and youth due to some absentees, Elmley had to adjust their batting and bowling order which reaped dividends and has now given them some daylight from the relegation zone.
Experienced pair Robin Eaton and Jamie Bailey got them off to a steady start with the help of youngster Mike Brown (20).
But it was a brilliant partnership of 204 between brothers Neil and Simon Cooper that was the main reason for the visitors picking up a priceless win and 20 points.
On a good batting track with short boundaries a hefty total was required.
Neil (117no) hit 18 boundaries including five sixes and Simon (89) struck 12 boundaries including four sixes in what proved magnificent innings.
It ensured the visitors posted an impressive 270 for 5 with captain John Payton 10-3-27-0 and J De Jagger 10-0-49-2 the only home bowlers to emerge with credit.
Simon Cooper(8-3-32-1) opening the bowling with captain Will Bailey(10-3-32-0) struck early when his bowling partner held onto a tricky catch to dismiss Ashley.
Lane (19) and Langman (40) rode their luck in a partnership of 58 but with the elder players having done their part with the bat it was now the turn for the young guns to play their part with with the ball.
This they did admirably by grabbing wickets. Sam Hopkins (9-1-40-1) started the mission with Mike Brown(10-0-58-3) taking the vital wicket of the dangerous looking De Jagger (54).
Ashley Hemming (5-0-26-2) and Ashley Charlton(2-0-15-1) took care of the middle to late order batsman.
Liam Charlton took the last wicket of plucky youngster Henry Blake (33) with the penaultimate ball of the innings which saw the hosts for 231.
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