Wem head for Bournemouth again

Ecb U15 National Club Championship

Portman U15 National Club Championship

Midlands Regional Final
Moseley Cricket Club
Monday August 6 2007

Great Tew (Oxfordshire)
Olton & West Warwickshire (Warwickshire)
Wem (Shropshire)
Topcroft (Norfolk)

SF1: Great Tew (107-6) lost to Olton (109-4) by six wickets

Local favourites Olton & WW opened this tournament at the home ground of their bitter local rivals against the Oxfordshire champions, Great Tew.

Olton’s opening bowlers found a good pitch work in their favour and produced a bowling display which, had it not been for a generous wides column, would have severely restricted the batting side.

Some good running between the wickets interspersed with foolhardy swings of the bat saw Great Tew stutter to a below par total of 107 for six.

Olton, by reply, batted confidently from the start, the first wicket falling for 53 in the ninth over. By then the game was almost won and with only three more wickets falling before 100 runs were scored the victory was assured and completed four overs early.

SF2: Wem (140-3) beat Topcroft (106 all out) by 34 runs

Wem, looking to do better than last year’s fourth place, were drawn against Topcroft – the champions of Norfolk. On a bottom square favourable to the seam bowling Wem lost two early wickets only to be steadied by an excellent partnership between their captain C. Peel (50 ret.) and A.Ottershman (41).

By hitting the bad balls and running hard a competitive total of 140 was reached without too much fuss.

Topcroft, by contrast, played like a side putting themselves under pressure. Despite their obvious talent the Norfolk champions too often went for the big shot and suffered as a result with four of their top six holing out to mid on or off.

Finally bowled out for 106 the Wem bowling attack backed up a strong batting performance to set up what should be a very well matched final against Olton.

Final: Wem (136-5) beat Olton (130-9) by six runs

In the final, Wem capitalised on winning a very important toss by continuing to impress with the bat.

Ottersham (51 ret) and Peel (50 ret) put on 94 for the first wicket in just 15.3 overs. This excellent start allowed the rest of the side to come out and confidently play their shots which they did by and large, scoring 43 from the remaining four or so overs to set a rather daunting 137 to win.

Olton lost two early wickets to tight and aggressive Wem bowling, but Olton’s batsmen worked hard and redressed the balance so that at 10 overs they were in the driving seat at 77 for two.

This partnership was broken with Olton at 101, with five overs to go 26 runs were needed - the scene was set for a thrilling finish.

Olton’s reliance on their top four was exposed as the last of this quartet reached 50 and was forced to retire. From here wickets fell quickly and 12 from the last over proved too much for the Olton tail who fell six short of their target.