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Cricket: Defending champions Connah’s Quay dent Llandudno’s hopes of title glory

ADAM Hodgkins was the man of the moment as he helped his new side Connah’s Quay deliver a blow to their old enemy Llandudno’s title hopes.

Last season Quay ended Llandudno’s run of titles and the Seasiders have this term set their sights on recovering the crown from the Deeside outfit.

But former Northop Hall all-rounder Hodgkins arrived with Martin Burger’s Quay at the Oval, having just moved from Leigh, and put a spanner in the title-chasing Tudno machine.

Burger won the coin-toss and chose to bowl first.

It was Ryan Holloway who made the initial breakthrough before Darren Leach took over, claiming 3-48 as Tudno battled to set a target of 177-6 for their visitors to chase.

In the initial stages the home side felt confident as only Darren Jones of the top four batsmen made double figures (19).

But Hodgkins stepped up and took control of the response as the batsmen around him battled to keep things going at their end.

In 70 deliveries Hodgkins racked up 84 runs, including seven fours and four sixes, powering Quay within reach of victory.

It was Leach (13no) and Jonathan Evans (9no) who got Burger’s side over the line with 178-8, keeping their very slender hopes of defending their crown alive.

Relegation-threatened MOLD travelled to Brymbo and were on the receiving end of a 74-run defeat.

Having chosen to bat Brymbo then set about establishing dominance.

Opener D Parry struck 72 and James Claybrook in the middle order made 56 as Brymbo made it to 217-8dec.

Only Jamie Ryle really exploited Brymbo’s weaknesses, the Mold bowler taking 5-30.

Chasing more than 200 is never easy but against a team just two places above them in the league should have given Mold a little more faith in their ability to compete.

At first it seemed that may be the case as Russell Wiseman kicked things off with 31.

But the runs were few and far between. Captain Usman Butt provided 28 runs and that was the last of the contributions until the very end.

As the specialist batsmen collapsed with alarming speed it was left to the tail to shoulder the unlikely task of seeing out more than half of the scheduled overs for Mold’s innings.

John Crane and Jamie Ryle bravely tried, Cran scoring 24 and Ryle 29, but they were never going to bat through and Mold were all out for 143.