Our U15 Youth Representative Team are all Tied Up!

South Essex U15 182-8
Metropolitan Essex Dolphins U15 182-5

Some exciting, tense finishes have been played out in the recent district youth representative matches organised by the Essex County Cricket Board, but none more so than this tied clash at the Whitbread ground at Loughton.  With the match looking lost for the South Board after a 75-run first wicket partnership, the match was back in the balance after superb glove work from Archie Davis (Rankins CC) claimed a stumping from the bowling of Charles Ball (Old Southendian and Southchurch CC).  The fightback from the local lads stalled slightly as opportunities to take further wickets were missed which allowed the hosts to put on a further 75 for the second wicket.  However, the South’s fielding and bowling stepped up several gears and Jack Plom (Orsett CC) bagged two wickets in one over and Austin Holmes (Hadleigh and Thundersley CC) bowled the visitors’ first maiden in the 32nd over, which placed all the pressure on the hosts.  With only four wickets down and five runs per over required a tight finish was guaranteed.  The Dolphins required seven runs from the final over which was bowled by Will Gibbon (Orsett CC).  After five deliveries, the scores were level.  A dramatic tie was secured when Davis achieved a run out as the home pair tried to scamper a match-winning single.

Earlier, South Board captain Harry Slack (Leigh on Sea CC) won the toss and elected to bat, but he saw his side slump to 21 for the loss of three wickets.  Rahul Ravi (Westcliff on Sea CC) and Matt Denmark (Hadleigh & Thundersley and Canvey Island CC) started a recovery by putting on 30 runs until both gave their wickets away which brought the Orsett duo of Plom and Gibbon together.  Plom scored 27 and Gibbon struck a commanding 55 in a crucial partnership worth 70 runs.  Then, Matt Dobson (Rayleigh CC) made the perfect impact late in the innings with a quick fire 35 not out from as many deliveries.  Scott Simmons, U15 coach for the South Essex District Cricket Board said: “Superb temperament and experience was shown from our team and to defend 182 was a great effort on a very good track and fast outfield”.

West Essex U15 184-8
South Essex U15 185-4

On a pitch which was described by their coach as the best he had seen all season, the South Essex District Cricket Board’s under fifteen representative team did exceptionally well to keep their hosts to a score below the 200 mark at the Saffron Walden club.  Harry Slack (Leigh on Sea CC) lost the toss for the first time this season, but he rotated the bowling with exceptional results and was backed up by strong fielding which accounted for three home batsmen being run out.  The outstanding bowlers were Austin Holmes (Hadleigh and Thundersley CC) whose six overs cost just six runs and included four maidens (one wicket) while Josh Jones helped himself to 3-23 from four overs.

After a tea described as ‘amazing’ with some first class cakes, the banquet did not slow the South Board batters as Holmes and Slack put on 64 for the first wicket with some quick running between the wickets.  Austin was in fine touch, scoring 45 runs in double quick time.  Harry Slack scored two runs more before being bowled.  Two 59-run partnerships had clearly laid the foundations for a successful run chase.  Rahul Ravi (Westcliff on Sea CC) then struck 58 until he was dismissed with the South score on 176 for three wickets.  Jack Plom (Orsett CC) was chomping at the bit to get a knock and he did not fail to impress with two big boundaries to see his team home with a comfortable victory after 35.4 overs.