A thrilling match that produced more than 500 runs and 18 wickets from 100 overs ultimately came down to just one scoring shot as Haverhill lost to Copford by three runs in Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship Division One.
Haverhill were left to chase a challenging 256 to win after Copford posted 255-9 in their 50 overs.
Will Bailey (7-1-20-1) excelled early on once more but Copford’s Australian overseas player Tim Richards got among the runs before being caught in the deep by Bailey off Ben Wilkins (2-52) for 61.
Copford skipper James Bell (33), Pete Kligerman (28, Russell Measor (25), Rob Tuckwell (21). Tom Helmer (20) and number ten Ben Rawson (17no) all made good contributions.
In reply, Dan Pass and Anthony Phillips shared an opening stand of 56 (their second successive partnership of 50 plus) before Pass was bowled by Helmer just four shy of what would have been a swashbuckling half-century.
After Chris Palmer was bowled by Richards (10-1-31-2) for two and Phillips was run out for 27 Dave Humphrey and skipper Adam Dellar put on a fourth wicket partnership of 80 before Humphrey was caught on the boundary off Helmer for 33 with the score at 176-4.
With Dellar playing beautifully the game seemed there for the taking for Haverhill but he was caught on the boundary by Measor off Kieran Savill for a season’s best of 90 with the score on 198-5.
Despite teenager Josh Ruthven holding the lower order reply together with an unbeaten 29 and with Haverhill only needing a little over four runs per over for the last ten overs, wickets fell regularly and with Copford applying the pressure the runs dried up to leave them agonisingly short.
•In Division Three, Haverhill II came back from their trip to Halstead II with an impressive six wicket victory after chasing down 169 to win.
Yet another promising young bowler, Tom Baker (10-3-35-2), dismissed Halstead captain Cath Dalton for two for the early breakthrough.
Andy Rose (48), Ian Pont (37) and Justin Rose (32) all made good contributions for Halstead, but veteran Martyn Wilkins took 3-30 off 11 overs and Andy Argent 2-46 in nine to keep the score to 168-8 off 45 overs.
Haverhill lost Sam Hartshorn early for five but Liam Botten (20), Rob Dovaston (44) and Steve Fox (66) kept them ahead of the game and they reached their victory target in 39.3 overs to claim their second successive win.