This year there was a change to the fixture structure for the District games. The County had requested we play all 4 district games in the first two weeks of the summer holidays. This meant the T20 competition would now be played in the summer half term.
The original plan was for us to play two games on 1st June against West and North and on Friday 3rd June we would play Central. The two top teams would play each other, as a final in the afternoon. The weather unfortunately had other ideas and the first day of competition was a complete washout. A restructure meant we were playing a straightforward knockout and we were drawn against Central.
We were confident of our chances in this competition, both Neil and myself believed we had an excellent group of players, who had worked hard during the winter months. We did though realise the other districts were also very strong and to my recollection we had never previously won the T20 competition.
Central vs South
In this game we won the toss and elected to bat first. Plans were put into place as to target scores, based on scores at 5, 10, 15 and 20 overs, with contingency plans dependant on the number of wickets lost. At the start of the game the ground was still wet and the wicket was very green, there was plenty of assistance for the bowlers. David Jarrett got us off to a great start with a quick fire 43, steady scores from others including Jamie Fairweather with 22 meant we finished the innings on 136. Considering the wicket we thought this would take some chasing down.
The bowling was opened by Matt McCutcheon and George Benson, they were able to keep very tight control of the run rate and after they had completed their spells, with 8 overs down and an escalating required run rate, wickets continued to fall regularly and the game was won comfortably.
North vs South
We had kept an eye on the other game and realised there were some very good players in the North team and we would need to lift our game to another level if we were to compete.
We lost the toss and were put into bat, again there was a good team performance with highlights being, David Jarrett 44, Jamie Fairweather 32 and Captain Michael Pearn scoring an unbeaten 29, we finished on 142.
In the field we did not bowl as well as we hoped, there were too many wides and we appeared to be doing our best to keep North in the game. The game though turned on two moments of brilliance, dismissing two of the North’s strongest batsman. The first involve a fantastic throw from David Jarrett all the way from a very long boundary which stand in wicket keeper, Adam Sullivan, was able to take the ball over the stumps and whip the bails off as North tried to run a quick two. The second was as fine a catch as I have seen at any level from David Jarrett, the ball seemed to have gone past him and I can only describe it as a one handed, backhanded catch where he was unable to see the ball into his hand – simply brilliant.
We eventually won the game by 15 runs.
Congratulations to the team on this performance, fully deserved. Thanks to Neil for all the unseen work he performs.
We now move to the 4 District games, unfortunately due to holidays I will not be at these games but I hope the boys continue to play with the same intensity and achieve the success they deserve.