Marshall plays important knock as Fakenham comfortably see off Diss

Brilliant batting from Lloyd Marshall helped Fakenham to a good win against Diss Picture: MIKE WYATT

Brilliant batting from Lloyd Marshall helped Fakenham to a good win against Diss Picture: MIKE WYATT - Credit: Archant

Despite being nowhere near their best, Fakenham secured an 86 run victory against relegation threatened Diss on Saturday.

With the start an hour late due to rain Fakenham were asked to bat first after losing the toss on a wicket with some pace, but also plenty of lateral movement and overhead conditions that favoured bowling.

They were on the back foot at 20-3 as Keegan Monahan Fairlie (1) Luke Caswell (3) and Jon Ewart (11) all came and went. Yet more rain then meant more time was lost.

Will Dunger and Ben Harvey did their best to steady the ship and did so expertly with Harvey obdurate and technically sound and Dunger similarly sound but also trying to feed in small doses of belligerence. The pair put on 75 before Dunger got a big edge through to the wicket-keeper and departed for 53.

Harry Bammant fell for nine and as has been the case more than once this year it was left to Lloyd Marshall to salvage respectability. Marshall, with Harvey providing stoic support at the other end did this and more. A brilliant 63 off 49 balls including four sixes helped Fakenham to a total of 226-7, providing maximum batting points for the side. Marshall and Coyle (1) fell late on while Harvey brought up a hard fought but nonetheless valuable half century late on to end with 58 not out.

In defence of the total, Caswell again supplied early breakthroughs and equally importantly left Diss with limited scoring options in his opening spell (7-4-10-2) and in partnership with Marshall (1-22) Diss were left floundering.

Toby Hood picked up the wicket of the division's leading run scorer Rob Tooke on his way to 2-43.

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All hopes rested on Jebb Swallow, the Diss overseas player, who was playing with authority and quality and he brought up an effortless 50 to keep Diss in the hunt at 110-5 off 30 overs.

Swallow departed soon after though, caught in the gloom by Marshall off the bowling of Coyle (1-33) and with it, any Diss hopes of an unlikely victory also departed as Billy Buckingham collected three cheap wickets to end with 4-28 as Fakenham secured victory to hoist them into second place in the Norfolk Alliance Premier Division table behind North Runcton.

Fakenham make the short trip to take on bottom of the table neighbours Dereham on Saturday.