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Run bonanza in Cockspur Cup

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Batsmen up and down the country filled their boots in the warm spring sunshine as the first round of the Cockspur Cup turned into a bumper run fest.

There were runs galore as records, pertaining to both temperatures and totals fell by the wayside.

In Group 3, Skelmanthorpe scored 422, most of which were scored by one man, Max Joice, who made 234.

Archivists at the ECB are attempting to work out if this is an all-time record so watch this space...

Osterley lost their Group 12 match despite scoring 297 against Ickenham who responded with a blistering chase making 301 with eight balls to spare.

Tournament favourites Waltham were sensationally knocked out in the biggest giant killing of the first round by Buckingham Town, leaving Group 13 wide open.

With the threat of April showers far behind us, the 2007 Cockspur Cup is set for a batting bonanza as the second round welcomes the top seeded teams. Get down to your local club on 13th May to catch the action.

First Round Highlights

Group 1

Guisborough, 308 for five, beat Norton, 121 all out, by 187 runs.

A hard-hitting opening stand of 201 from N Russell (113) and G Murray (95) set the tone of the match then P Goodchild (9-5-11-6) ripped through the Norton side with the best bowling performance of the round.

Group 2

Alan Gofton (Chesterfield) 112

Group 3

Skelmanthorpe, 422 for four, beat Spen Victoria, 211 for nine, by 211 runs

The 422 total, a club record, was made possible by a 333-run partnership, another record, between club captain Max Joice (234) and James Dollive (117*) and a very generous extras column (44), which resulted directly from a drop in the opponent’s morale. Spen’s bowling column made ugly reading – an opening spell of 9-0-99-0 said it all.

Cleethorpes, 223 all out, lost to Clifton Alliance, 224 for seven, by three wickets

A captain’s innings from W Kirby (100 from 100 balls) wasn’t enough to save Cleethorpes from defeat at the hands of local North Yorkshire rivals Clifton Alliance whose strength in depth won out on the day.

Selby, 234 for eight, lost to Harrogate, 236 for seven, by three wickets

Cockspur Cup regulars Harrogate narrowly scraped past a spirited Selby side. A slow start from Selby was lifted by a swashbuckling innings of 58 in just 22 balls from S. Smith. More tight bowling from the home side looked to have swung the tie in their favour, except for a fine eighth wicket stand of 103 between local musician Max Sedgley (50*) and M Rawlings (50*) which saw the visitors home with 16 balls to spare.

Group 4

Stuart Burton (Fulwood & Broughton) 112

Group 5

Sefton Park, 150 for nine, lost to Leyland, 151 for nine, by one wicket

A nail-biter at Leyland CC as the new ECB seeding system produced a rare meeting between North West rivals from two separate Premier Leagues. After a tidy spell of bowling (9-2-28-2) Leyland hero-of-the-day David Makinson (17*) hit the winning runs in the penultimate over.

Group 6

Bramhall, 221 all out, lost to Whitchurch, 221 for nine, by losing more wickets

Another nail biter at Whitchurch. Tail enders P. Lewis and D. Ashley saw out the last over to force a tie on runs and progress to round 2 by way of losing fewer wickets.

Oswestry, 224 for eight, beat Alsager, 104 all out, by 120 runs

The first hat-trick of the 2007 competition from Tom Johnson (5.1-1-19-5) saw the Shropshire Prem leaders breeze past the Cheshire side.

New Brighton, 343 for seven, beat Kearsly, 196 all out, by 147 runs

New Brighton helped themselves to buckets of runs at their Rake Lane home ground. Four of their top order notched half centuries with local greengrocer L. Wilson top scoring with 78. The Kearsly reply never matched up to some accurate bowling from the Wirral’s finest.

Darcy Lever, 216 all out, beat Alderley Edge by 24 runs

Local favourites Alderley Edge failed to overcome a low score away from home as Darcy Lever got away with bowling 22 wides after posting the lowest winning score of the round. DL hero was Andrew Griffiths (9-1-23-6) whose bowling display was the difference between the two sides.

Group 7

Richard Harvey (Little Stoke) 161

Joe Gordon (Market Harborough) 136

Market Harborough, 268 for six, beat Old Edwardians,182 for nine, by 86 runs

A partnership of 100 for the second wicket between brothers Joe (136) and Chris (35) Gordon saw Market Harborough post a total that Old Edwardians never came close to.

Group 8

Wombourne, 179 all out, lost to Leamington, 181 for seven by three wickets

The success of the 2004 Leamington U13s is starting to filter through to their senior sides three years down the track. Tom Lewis and Paul Best, undoubted stars of the 2004 U13 National Champions, now form the backbone of this Leamington side batting at two and seven and fulfilling roles as first and second change bowlers respectively. If their 2004 contemporaries are in line for selection for the 1st XI, we are in for great things from this young side. Watch this space.

Cannock, 323 for eight, beat Moseley Ashfield, 268 for nine, by 55 runs

Another run fest was seen here in Midlands as Staffordshire terriers Cannock scored freely during their visit to the big smoke. Local milliner Richard Jones top scored with a fantastic 153 from just 85 balls as they amassed a huge total of 323. Moseley were not to be outdone as opener O. Thomas smashed 60 from 32 balls and a thrilling chase ensued with quick innings from P Jeffries (58 off 51) and I Carey (52 off 56) which kept Moseley’s hopes alive and Cannock’s hearts in mouths, but it was not to be.

M Habib (Smethwick) 116*

Group 9

Swansea, 229 for five, beat Bristol, 219 all out, by ten runs.

The Lloyd Brothers Rhodri (103) and Rhys (50) shared a second wicket stand of 92 to put the game just beyond Bristol, but not without the help of Simon James (9-1-25-3) who destroyed Bristol’s top order and left them reeling on 34-3. A strong performance from the visitor’s middle order took them close but it finished one-nil to the Welsh Prem.

Group 10
No matches

Group 11

Alton, 266 for five, beat Ventnor, 264 for eight, by two runs

Emotions - and blood pressure - ran high as a terrific game of cricket was played out under the shadow of political backbiting and intense rivalry. Ventnor were denied promotion two years running due to the size of their ground by the League Chairman, who just so happens to be Alton’s President. Michael Heffernan pulled out all the stops with a strong 113 at the top of the Alton order, but a spirited Ventnor reply fell just two short.

Cove, 338 for three, beat Basingstoke, 259 all out, by 79 runs

Underdogs Cove benefited from generous Basingstoke bowling - 41 wides! Niell Randall took full advantage with an unbeaten 143.

Thatcham, 308 for five, beat Farncombe, 117 all out, by 190 runs

A superb partnership of 217 from local butcher D Stone (102) and M Denness (115) helped Thatcham to a total which proved well out of Farncombe’s reach. A devastating spell of 7-3-6-4 from Thatcham’s C Bird reduced the visitors to 118 all out.

Group 12

Ickenham, 297 for six, lost to Osterley, 301 for six, by four wickets

A fast and furious 85* from captain A. Rizui saw his side home with eight balls to spare in a frantically paced Middlesex derby match. The tie of the round so far…

Kidlington, 286 for four, beat Burnham, 279 for eight, by seven runs

Another nail biter in this South East group. Half centuries from Ali (54), Buckingham (55) and Bradshaw (60*) and 39 extras helped the visitors to a steady target. A gritty 72 from Mo Fazel was in vain as the Burnham innings fell away seven runs short of the target.

Group 13

Buckingham Town, 199 for nine, beat Waltham, 128 all out, by 71 runs

Giant killing of the round. Easily one of the most successful sides of recent years fell to Buckingham Town, albeit a Home Counties Prem side, in a low scoring game. Waltham never recovered from losing their top four for 12 runs. The principal destroyer was Bryn Jones (9-1-25-4) but an all round fielding performance of the highest standard overwhelmed Waltham to blow the strong Group 13 wide open. Expect more of the same from the Buckingham side.

Group 14

Cambridge Granta, 329 for six, beat Harlow, 105 all out, by 224 runs

Positive batting from the first ball allowed the Cambridge side to post a huge total creating unbearable pressure for the visiting batsmen who duly crumbled. At 26 for five, the contest was over with local ironmonger Matt Kay the pick of the bowlers with 4-30.

Group 15

No results in.

Group 16

Tunbridge Wells, 298 for five, beat Minster, 236 for nine, by 62 runs

Isle of Sheppey side Minster, five leagues below the Kent Prem giants, threatened to cause a major upset at the Neville Ground. An unbeaten fifth wicket stand of 179 from Mark Smith (138*) and Brough Cooper (94*) including 70 in the last five overs looked to have put the game out of reach of the young pretenders. Had opener Irshaad Mohamed (145) received better support, a stronger challenge could have been mounted but a regular flow of wickets saw them fall 62 runs short.