Palmer sets new club record but Haverhill still taste defeat

Haverhill batsman Chris Palmer on his way to scoring 148 against Witham. ANL-161007-201244009
Haverhill batsman Chris Palmer on his way to scoring 148 against Witham. ANL-161007-201244009
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Chris Palmer’s magnificent innings of 148 for Haverhill against Witham may have been a new club record, but it was not enough to prevent the visitors from marching to a seven-wicket victory.

Palmer entered the fray with Haverhill 0-1 after skipper Adam Dellar was caught behind off Matt McKendry for a duck.

He went on to record the highest ever score by a Haverhill player in Division One of the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship before playing on to spinner Carl Bragg with just one ball of the innings remaining - and just one shot away from reaching his 150 - as the hosts posted 283-5 off their 50 overs.

Palmer gained great support from Ant Phillips, who hit 51 in their second wicket partnership of 95 and 18-year-old Josh Ruthven, who scored 52, his first ever Division One half-century, in a partnership of 117 for the third wicket.

Palmer’s ton was only the second at Manor Road by a Haverhill player in a Division One match, surpassing Amit Gupta’s 101 no against Maldon in June 2014, and was the biggest in Division One since Adam Dellar scored 141no at Mildenhall in July, 2013.

After Will Bailey claimed the wicket of opener Mike Godwin for seven, Witham skipper Jake Wakelin hit 105 before being caught behind off Callum Brunning (10-2-40-1) with the score on 180.

Witham’s Australian number three, Adrian Chad, who began the match with a batting average of 72, plundered 139 not out to see third-placed Witham home for the loss of just three wickets with five overs to spare.

Haverhill dropped to second-bottom after the defeat and next play a crucial match away on Saturday at Hadleigh, a team that is just one point and one place above them.