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New League Leaders and A LOT OF RAIN!

19th July 2011

For the umpteenth time this season the rain played a big part in the weekend’s cricket.

Metro v South Wales was the main victim with the game rained off on Saturday morning. Due to heavy rain on the south coast the Sussex v Northants double header was reversed with the league game moving to the Sunday and the T20 quarter final moving forward 24 hours.

Saturday
Sussex Sharks v Northants Steelbacks (Twenty20 Cup)
At 2pm the umpires declared that no play would be possible until at least 5pm, with rain still pouring down and a dreadful forecast for the rest of the afternoon it was decided that the only way to get a result was a bowl out. Under T20 rules this meant one shot per bowler for 5 bowlers in the same fashion as a football penalty shoot out.

With rain still falling Northants won the toss and shot first. Eddy Claridge, Charles Ronayne, Dave Gavrilovic, Tom Willis and Matt Ringland all missed for Northants as did Joe Harrison, Andy Dalby-Welsh, Gav Griffiths, Dan Field and Rob Comber for Sussex.

This sent it to sudden death, Eddy Claridge again missed for Northants and Joe Harrison was unable to take advantage. Charles Ronayne’s second attempt was Northants’s 7th shot and when the ball clattered into the leg stump it put the pressure on Sharks. Andy Dalby-Welsh took his time but failed to hit the stumps to hand Northants a 1-0 win.

This means Northants qualify for finals day for the second consecutive year, where as Sussex miss out for the first time since the competition officially started in 2009.

Sunday
Yorkshire v Metro Devils (League)
These two teams started the day as the bottom two on the league table. Yorkshire handed a competitive debut to the best new player winner at the 2010 BCEW development tournament, Wynston Stafford. Colin Baxter made his first start of the season but Taf Naqvi, Alex Towers and Jason Adams were absent. Metro Devils were missing their injured captain Dave Samuels as well as Hassan Khan and Roy Smith and were only able to field 8 players for this match.

Devils batted first and got off to a disastrous start as Mark Cummings was bowled by Elliot Conway from the first ball of the match. Conway also bowled Liam O’Carrol (2) and Mark Betts caught Theresa Robberts (4) from John Garbett’s bowling to leave the London side wobbling at 23/3.

Ryan Jones (17 from 29 balls) and Rob Mackenzie (2 from 17 balls) shared the longest partnership of the innings before Mark Betts took two more catches to dismiss them both from the bowling of Atif Rafiq and Wynston Stafford respectively.

The London side’s innings came to a rapid end with John Garbett bowling Sarah Clare and Wynston Stafford (2-19) claiming his second career wicket as he bowled Vassana Snyotha. Hasmukh Mehta finished 0 not out as his side were all out for 62.

Yorkshire chased down the target in a new BCEW record of just 10 legal deliveries, Peter Blueitt hit 5 boundaries with 42 from 9 balls and Mark Betts scored 14. This saw Yorkshire claim a 10 wicket win which moved them up to sixth in the league table.

Sussex Sharks v Northants Steelbacks (League)
Sussex fielded a strong team, Miles Northwood being their only high profile absentee. Northants were without a number of senior players including Alastair Provan, Dave Keeling, Ian Goodearl, Matt Ringland and Shah Miah. Sophie Aston made her Steelbacks debut and Tom Willis, Ben Stingmore and Rob Fenton played their first matches of the season.

In very windy conditions Northants batted first with Charles Ronayne and Mark Horbatowski getting their side off to a decent start. With the score on 17 Joe Harrison ripped a hole in the Northants batting line up.

Mark Horbatowski was first out as he drove the ball straight to the safe hands of Dan Field. Chris Norman fell next ball clean bowled before Kelvin Duncan took an excellent close catch to dismiss Eddy Claridge and secure Harrison’s hattrick. Dave Gavrilovic did survive long enough to deny Harrison a 4th successive wicket and even shared the highest partnership of the innings before playing no shot to a delivery drowned out by the wind and being bowled. This was Gav Griffiths’s first wicket of the innings and in his next over he had a second as Charles Ronayne’s 37 ball innings was ended for 17 by Kelvin Duncan’s 4th catch of the season.

Tom Willis and Ben Stingmore took the score past 50 before Griffiths finished his spell with two further wickets, Willis was sharply stumped by Si Ledwith from the first ball of the over before Rob Fenton was beaten for pace by the final ball of the over with the ball flying off the top edge into Ledwith’s waiting hands.

Rob Comber claimed the final two wickets, Elliot Stonhill played a poor shot with Dan Field taking the catch before Ben Stingmore was caught by Toby Collins as he attempted to add a few late runs. Sophie Aston finished 0 not out as Steelbacks were out for just 65. Gav Griffiths’s 4-17 took him up to 9 wickets as top b1 wicket taker and Joe Harrison’s 3-9 made him just the second bowler to reach double figures this season with 11 wickets (still 8 behind Dave Ellingham).

Sussex’s reply got off to a rapid start with Si Ledwith hitting 3 boundaries in the first over. Ledwith and Joe Harrison continued to pile on the runs before Ledwith who had looked in excellent form tried one too many attacking shots and was bowled by a terrific Charles Ronayne delivery for 23. Harrison took on the role of the more attacking batsman chipping the ball over the in field and watching it race across the fast outfield to the boundary. Harrison was almost caught by Sophie Aston but that was the last alarm for Sharks as Harrison finished 26 not out with Gav Griffiths ending 2 not out.

The 9 wicket win takes Sharks top of the table by 2 points over South Wales Dragons, both teams have won all 4 of their league games but Dragons dropped 2 batting points against Northants.

Re-arrangements
Their have been 4 recent cancellations in the league, 3 of which were due to rain. Metro v Sussex will now take place on Saturday 13th August with Hampshire v Warwickshire now on 3rd September. No dates have yet been confirmed for South Wales v Yorkshire and Metro v South Wales.

This weekend is England training and England development training so there is no competitive cricket. If anyone out there is interested in going to England development training it is on Sunday in Berkshire, for full details please either contact me or John Garbett.