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Suffolk open up with double Twenty20 defeat to Cambridgeshire



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New Suffolk Twenty20 skipper Tom Rash described his side’s batting collapse in their second match as ‘unacceptable’ as the county suffered a disappointing double defeat against Cambridgeshire.

They first fixtures under the captaincy of Rash and new T20 coach Adam Mansfield saw Suffolk lose by seven wickets and then 26 runs at Wisbech CC on Sunday.

The double loss leaves Suffolk already facing an uphill struggle to qualify as only the winners of Group 3 go through to Finals Day at Tring Park on May 22.

Tom Rash bowling for Suffolk in his first match as the county’s new white-ball captain. Picture: Nick Garnham
Tom Rash bowling for Suffolk in his first match as the county’s new white-ball captain. Picture: Nick Garnham

After losing their first two wickets with only four runs on the board in the first match, Suffolk posted 135-5 in their 20 overs.

Jack Beaumont top-scored with 47 off 36 balls, with Josh Cantrell (23) and Darren Ironside (31 not out) making useful contributions.

But Mildenhall’s Jack Potticary (38 off 28 balls) and Nikhil Gorantla (64 not out off 47 balls) saw Cambridgeshire home with two overs to spare.

Batting first in the second match, Cambridgeshire reached 129 for 7 with two overs to go, before Jamie Sykes scored 18 off seven deliveries as the home team closed on 160-8.

Beaumont, debutant Tristan Blackledge and Freddie Heldreich each took two wickets.

Suffolk were 85 for 2 in reply, but Josh Cantrell then fell to the third ball of the 12th over and when Ben Claydon, whose 56 came from 41 balls, was fifth man out three overs later the innings fell away.

A disappointed Rash said: “There have been some positive notes – Jack Beaumont has played really well in the first game and bowled really well as well and Ben Claydon in the second game scored a lovely fifty and there was a strong debut from Tristan Blackledge, so it is not all doom and gloom.

“The pitch was quite tacky in the morning. We felt we got a score on the board that we could defend, but unfortunately they came out and got off to a real flyer in the powerplay.

“It is something we will have to go away and think about. The bowlers will be challenged on their plans in that area, but hopefully we will come back stronger next time.”

Of Cambridgeshire’s innings in the second match Rash said: “Going into the last three or four overs we were confident of keeping them below 150.

“Unfortunately, one guy came in and came off – that’s the nature of T20. Even with 160 on the board we felt like that was gettable as the pitch got better as the day went on.

“With the start we had we felt we were very much in the game at the half-way stage, but we lost our last seven wickets for 59 (sic 49) runs which is just unacceptable at this level.

“The boys will be having to go away and think how to score when things get tight and that is something we will be working on.”

Suffolk are back in action this coming Sunday when they play their first home match in the competition against Lincolnshire at Ipswich School, start 11am.