Young Luke Fulton bowls relegation-threatened Warwick to vital win
Wellington Oval (Western Stars won toss): Warwick beat Western Stars by six wickets
Warwick secured a vital victory over Western Stars to keep their chances of survival alive in the Athene T20 Premier Division.
Lorenzo Tucker’s team did well to restrict their rivals to a modest total before reaching their target comfortably with plenty of wickets and deliveries to spare with fifteen-year-old seamer Luke Fulton doing the damage with the ball as he claimed four wickets across his three bowling spells.
Malachi Jones and captain Cory Burgess then led the chase, stroking 25 and 27 respectively.
Torleair Richards-Caines, who was making his return to the Warwick line-up after being suspended for spitting at Southampton Rangers player Dion Stovell, and Omari DeShields combined in a match-winning stand of 39 after Jones and Burgess departed to clinch Warwick’s second straight victory with 20 balls to spare.
That they prevailed over Stars owed much to the bowling heroics of Fulton’s impressive haul of four for 23.
The Warwick Academy student got off to a poor start after going for 12 runs in the first over of the match but his fortunes took a turn for the better in his second over when he had Stars captain, wicketkeeper Khiry Furbert, caught at slip.
Fulton struck again in his second spell when bowling Jason Anderson with an inswinger before knocking over the stumps of Rohan Davis, who was attempting to flick a full-length delivery to the onside. Fulton completed his haul when trapped new batter Seth Campbell with his very next delivery to move to the brink of a hat -trick in his third spell.
It ultimately proved to be a feat beyond the teenager’s reach with incoming batter Jadon Springer blocking out the next delivery.
“It was definitely one of my better spells,” Fulton said. “I went for too many runs in my first over but that was all right because I made it up with the four wickets.
“The wicket was giving a little bit of assistance. I was just bowling the right length and got a little bit of movement with the seam up.”
Jones, Richards-Caines and Jodie Maroni took one wicket each as Stars were restricted to 114 for seven after electing to take the strike on an excellent batting track.
Dante Wellman was Stars’ top scorer with 36 not out, while Seion Darrell chipped in with 26 and Furbert 11.
Warwick suffered a slight wobble in reply when wicketkeeper Jahcobi Butterfield (3) and Kyle Swan (1) were removed in the space of four runs but Jones and Burgess steadied the ship with a timely 31-run partnership in four overs.
But Stars persevered and were rewarded when Campbell trapped Jones leg before in his final over and Darrell had Burgess grabbed at mid-on to leave the game interestingly poised.
However, Warwick stuck to their task admirably with Richards-Caines and DeShields carrying them safely across the line without further damage.
Richards-Caines finished unbeaten on 24 and DeShields 15, with the former dispatching Springer to the cow corner boundary for four to clinch Warwick’s victory in style.
“The victory is good for the team,“ Fulton added. ”It’s our third victory for the season so we just have to keep it up.
“This result definitely helps our cause of avoiding relegation but we need to focus on our last two games though.”
Campbell was the pick of the Stars bowling with two for 26.
*†Khiry Furbert c Jones b Fulton 11
G Manders c Richardson b Richards-Caines 2
Tre Manders c Butterfield b Jones 4
S Darrell b Maronie 26
D Wellman not out 36
J Anderson b Fulton 8
R Davis b Fulton 7
S Campbell lbw b Fulton 0
Extras (b 1, lb 1, nb 2, w 13) 17
Total (7 wkts; 20 overs) 111
Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-20, 3-34, 4-83, 5-95, 6-111, 7-111
S Davis, D McGlashin, J Springer did not bat
Bowling: Fulton 4-0-23-4; Richards-Caines 4-1-14-1; Jones 4-0-21-1; Burgess 4-0-11-0; Horan 2-0-24-0; Maronie 2-0-17-1
M Jones lbw b Campbell 25
†J Butterfield lbw b Davis 3
K Swan b Campbell 1
*C Burgess c Campbell b Darrell 27
T Richards-Caines not out 24
O DeShields not out 15
Extras (b 5, nb 2, w 16) 23
Total (4 wkts; 16.4 overs) 118
Fall of wickets: 1-11, 2-15, 3-46, 4-79
K Butterfield, J Maronie, L Fulton, L Horan, R Richardson did not bat
Bowling: Campbell 4-0-26-2; R Davis 4-0-14-1; Wellman 4-0-28-0; S Davis 2-0-15-0; Darrell 2-0-25-1; Springer 0.4-0-5-0.
Umpires: S Caines, D Smith
Match referee: R Dill.