PENARTH Cricket Club enjoyed their first victory of the 2020 mini-league season with a comfortable 47-run win over Malpas on Saturday.

Another excellent performance from Ben Wellington and four wickets for Mark Thomas provided the crucial contributions as Penarth made up for the previous week’s disappointment.

Batting first in hot conditions the Bears lost Alex Langrish in the second over, bowled by Ellis Jones, but a lively 31 from Jack Thomas got them off to a bright start before he was LBW to Daniel Jones.

An impressive stand of 96 between Wellington and Jamie Hitchen put Penarth in command with Hitchen in particular wasting no time before he was dismissed for a run a ball 42.

Penarth Times:

Jamie Hitchen hit a quick-fire 42 for Penarth

The consistent Wellington followed for a well-made 67 before debutant youth product Lewis Ingram managed 14 and skipper Nick Morgan a brisk 23 as Penarth pushed past the 200 mark.

Nathan Piddock and Tom Pascoe remained unbeaten as the innings closed at 222 for 7.

Malpas seemed well in the hunt as an opening partnership between Michael Martin and Ellis James saw them to 44 without loss from 8 overs.

The introduction of Wellington paid immediate dividends for Penarth as he bowled the dangerous Martin for 14 and Tim Miller soon accounted for James Archer, caught by Morgan for 10.

Mark Thomas reduced the hosts to 83 for 4 with the wickets of James and Andrew Ross in consecutive balls and although Daniel Jones and Lewis Morgan added 50 for the fifth wicket Penarth were in the driving seat.

The stand was broken when Jones was dismissed by Thomas for 29 and Penarth made light work of the Malpas tail.

Neil Stephens, who has now played first team cricket in six different decades, picked up 3 wickets for 36 while Thomas collected his fourth and Wellington returned to finish the match as Malpas were all out for 175.

At the Athletic Field the seconds were in friendly action against an impressive Radyr side who were comfortable victors by 70 runs.

An excellent 71 by opener Morris and 37 for his partner Wilbraham set the platform for Radyr while a brace of wickets each for Andrew Graveson and Aaron Noormohamed were the Penarth highlights as Radyr made 219 for 5 from their 40 overs.

Captain Gareth Jenkins made a brisk 52 in the Penarth reply and while he was there the game looked in the balance but nobody could back up his efforts before O’Neill wrapped up the Penarth tail in double-quick time with 6 for 26 as Radyr returned home comfortable winners.

On the neighbouring pitch a sparkling 117 by Jon Ellis set the tone for a comfortable 3rd XI win over visitors Blaengarw.

Useful contributions from Conrad Adams, Keith James and Sarvpreet Singh in support of Ellis’ superb knock helped Penarth to a commanding 256 for 4 from their 40 overs.

Singh completed an excellent day’s work with 3 consecutive wicket maidens to rip out the Blaengarw top order and with the remaining wickets shared between Mortimer, Isaac Foster, Navan Kathir and Brunning the visitors could muster just 69 for a huge winning margin of 187 runs.

A fourth XI friendly with Ponthir was dominated by the Akhtar family, dad Ishy and son Adam, as Penarth enjoyed a crushing 144-run win.

The highlight of Penarth innings was a fabulous knock of 108 by Ishy, his first century in 30 plus seasons with the club.

Wickets fell around him regularly and Penarth were 96 for 5 at one stage, but some excellent lower order contributions in support from Nathaniel Fox, Elys Johnson and William Davis helped Penarth to 216 for 8.

Early wickets fell in reply to Luke Summerfield, Johnson and Davis but Adam Akhtar wasn’t about to let dad have all the glory as he chipped in with an incredible 5 for 11 as Ponthir subsided to just 72 all out.

On Sunday the Bay Dragons provided the opposition for another friendly fixture and took the spoils by just 3 runs.

Andrew Prickett bagged 5 for 24 as the Dragons mustered 148 for 9 with Abdullah Ahmad making 31.

Penarth slipped to 89 for 7 before Rohan Rayani and Nathaniel Fox came together to add 45 and bring Penarth within touching distance before the Dragons held on for the narrowest of wins, Usman Ashraf taking 3 for 15.

The club were deeply saddened over the weekend to hear of the death of Peggy Crimp, wife of club president Graham who died himself earlier this year.

Peggy was a wonderful and dear friend to everyone at the club and will be greatly missed. Our condolences go out to her sons, Robert and Anthony, and the wider Crimp family.

On Saturday the first XI will visit Newbridge while seconds and thirds host Vale and Miskin Manor respectively.

Cardiff Cavaliers will visit the Athletic Field on Sunday.