BRAINTREE Cricket Club welcomed Mistley to Panfield Lane for their latest Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship division one fixture.

Unfortunately, rain intervened and the game was abandoned with the Dolphins setting themselves up for a victory push.

Braintree could only name four members of the previous week’s winning side, with new signing Chris Hinks and Andrew Gowers making their first-team debuts.

A damp wicket and outfield meant that the start was delayed for an hour with the match reduced to 40 overs per side, with Dan Garner won the toss and invited the opposition to bat first.

Kemsley Robb and Michael Griggs got Mistley off to a good start, putting on 50 runs inside the first ten overs.

Having scored 29, Griggs was first to lose his wicket as Andrew Gowers took a brilliant over the shoulder catch off Steve Hale’s bowling.

New batsman Kyran Young struggled to get bat on ball and he was soon sent back to the pavilion as a peach of a delivery from Robbie Spalding dismantled his stumps.

Robb was showing his class and brought up his half century with a huge six however he was deceived by the final ball of Hale’s bowling spell and was clean bowled.

Mistley had looked fairly comfortable as they brought up three figures for the loss of just two wickets, however an eight over spell of tight bowling and excellent fielding saw them reduced to 117 for seven.

Grahame Butcher (6) and Callum O’Connell (2) were both caught by Chris Leech off the bowling of Geoff Eveling whilst Alex Hood (9) was bowled.

Meanwhile Barry Stephens tempted Dan Goff (3) and Guy Walton took a comfortable catch.

Former Suffolk Minor Counties player Richard Pineo used his experience to slowly go about rescuing Mistley’s innings stroking singles and ensuring any loose deliveries were punished.

Eventually though having scored 44 he was adjudged LBW giving Eveling his fourth wicket.

Stephens sent Khewzi Gemede’s (11) stumps tumbling but George Hutton (15) and Sam Felgate (7) were undefeated as the visitors accumulated 200 off their allotted 40 overs.

Geoff Eveling was the pick of the Braintree bowlers with figures of 4-33 off his eight overs.

With rain clouds forming the Dolphins commenced their run chase but didn’t find things easy as Gumede put together a spell of quick accurate bowling.

Pineo was struggling to find his line though and bowled six wides in his opening two overs.

However, when he did get a delivery straight he sent Warren Celiz’s stumps tumbling.

With rain falling for the best part of 15 minutes and the wicket getting wetter and wetter the umpires eventually made the decision to take the players off.

Play was stopped for ten minutes, on its resumption Chris Leech and Chris Hinks found batting a little easier as they found the boundary ropes four times in the next two overs.

Unfortunately, only a further ten minutes play had been possible when the heavens opened again and this time the match was abandoned with Braintree having scored 42 for the loss of just one wicket.

The Dolphins first XI visit Hadleigh this Saturday while the seconds make the long trip to Mildenhall.