A NEW-LOOK Forge Valley 1sts opened their 2011 Beckett Premier League campaign with a thrilling win at Seamer as the experienced Mick Glew hit a superb century.
Valley batted first and got away to a solid start as Glew and promising youngster Josh Cooper put on a superb stand of 121 before Cooper fell for 24 in the 26th over.
Glew was now in full stride though and brought up a superb century that included 13 fours and four lusty blows that sailed over the rope.
Glew was removed by Marc Tyson without adding to his 100, but Valley’s dominance continued with new number three Joe Bradshaw (28) and skipper Dave Morris (51no) taking Valley on to 216-3 at the end of their 45 over stint at the crease, with Morris plundering veteran spin bowler Chris Clifford for 23 runs in the final over of the innings to help Valley to a decent total.
Seamer’s reply started poorly as they slipped to 17-2 and then 45-4 as pace bowler Matty Topham claimed a couple of wickets and some enthusiastic fielding saw two run-outs as the home side struggled to get going with the bat.
Qasim Umar hit some huge blows in his 48 and he was ably supported by Nick Pocknall (27) as Seamer recovered.
Dave Lawty and Tyson frustrated the young Valley attack to stem the tide before the pair opened up as they got their eye in and started to find the gaps, and at 189-7 in the 41st over, the home side looked well set to pick up what looked like an unlucky victory an hour earlier.
But Jake Nicholas returned for a second spell and quickly turned the game back in Valley’s favour, having Lawty stumped superbly by Cooper for 19.
Tyson remained unbeaten at the death but his 31 wasn’t enough to see Seamer over the line as they fell just nine runs short despite a gallant chase after a shaky start.
Topham finished with figures of 3-59, while Jonny Hays, Dave Sowden, Nicholas and Shaun Topham all collected a wicket apiece as Valley yielded 19 points in a superb start to the season, with Seamer getting six points on the board.
l Forge Valley were unable to raise a side for their National Village Knockout clash at Ingleby Greenhow on Sunday.
The club therefore forfeited the fixture and their place in the competition for the 2011 campaign.