10th May

10th May

The big schools cricketing story of the week one supposes, is the news that the MCC announced that the longest running fixture held at Lords – Eton vs Harrow is to no longer take place in its current form after this year’s fixture on the 28th of June. The Varsity match between Oxford and Cambridge has also been dealt the same blow.

The reasoning according to the MCC was to further the club’s goals of  broadening the scope of the fixture list, extending playing opportunities at Lord’s to a wider range of players, improving the balance between men’s and women’s cricket and expanding the scope for cricketers to realise their ambition of playing at Lord’s.

After a terrible year for the sport in terms of its perception by the wider public, this was a reaction from the MCC to make cricket less elitist. The statement went on to say the club’s committee “had decided to select matches to be played at the ground based on five “principles”, including a “greater diversity” of teams, more finals of school tournaments and more matches for women, juniors and MCC members.”

The fixture that first started in the same year as Trafalgar, has taken place at Lord ever since with the exception of the war years and in 2020 when no cricket (or to that matter, little else) was happening. In fact, Eton and Harrow are the last of ten schools who played annual fixtures at Lords until the 1960s. The others being Tonbridge, Marlborough, Cheltenham, Oratory, Haileybury, Clifton and the now defunct Beaumont College. At that time, the ever-increasing popularity of limited overs cricket saw the introduction of numerous competitions like the Gillette Cup (60 over), the Sunday League (40 overs) and the Benson and Hedges Trophy (55 overs) that saw the County Championship decline in the number of games played.

With many of these competitions now confined to the wayside and the 50 over competition no longer a first-class competition that may counties play on out grounds, the shorter format such as the T20 and Hundred has put the ground authorities at the major grounds under greater pressure.

The reaction from Eton and Harrow was one completely understanding the MCC’s decision and supporting their initiative on widening participation at this time, but one suspects that deep down there is disappointment, something picked up by many of the broadsheets and various other publications such as The Times of India. Indeed, The Spectator, went so far as to say that this was “simply a vindictive move on the part of the MCC, who wish to bin an English cricketing tradition for no better reason than to distance themselves from misplaced claims of elitism”.

It would be nice to think that the suggestion by the MCC that they would be willing to host school competition finals could see the National T20 finals day return to Lords someday soon and play on the main ground rather than the Nursery where it was played until 2011.  This competition along with the National U17 tournament always have featured cricket playing state schools as participants and it is the wish of this committee to increase this number further. Initiatives such as The Cricketer Top 100 Schools have regularly featured the best state schools and we were pleased to welcome another, the Canterbury Academy this week. Already through to the 2nd round of the Under 17s, they run a first-rate Cricket programme that was commended by The Cricketer magazine last year.

By chance, I spoke with the secretary of the Lancashire Schools Cricket Association, John Williams last weekend who reported that there had been a resurgence in cricket in the county’s state schools with record entries in cup competitions this year and seems to be bucking the trend reported elsewhere where declining numbers of children are playing. Now is perhaps the time for the ECB to involve themselves to a greater degree in school cricket, perhaps to the same level as in other sports like Rugby Union or in other countries such as South Africa. This would dispel the myths of elitism in the sport that seem to persist on many quarters.

***

Once again, fine weather at the weekend ensured that the batters were in the ascendency once again. The National Under 18 is now well underway with the many of the first-round group games completed on Sunday and schools entering the knockout phase. James Barker of Canford was the standout performer of the week with 156 scored off 62 balls in their DLS win over Bryanston in the Southwest section. The Northeast section is nearing completion though the North West section was delayed by wet weather last Wednesday. The South East group was won by the 2015 overall winners Hurstpierpoint, who now await the winners of the North London or South London groups. The latest results and draws where known follow. An updated draw can be found here

The National Under 17 has now entered it third round phase with some one-sided games reported. Harrow inflicted a heavy defeat on their traditional enemy, Eton while 2017 winners progressed at the expense of Radley. An updated draw can be found here.

Results

*Bede’s 173-7 (30 overs), Tonbridge 177-5

The Yorkshire Gentlemen 218-9 (40 overs), *St Peter’s, York 220 – 0 (W Bennison 143*)

Gentlemen of Leicester C.C. 173 , *Oakham 155

Oakham 220-8 (50 overs), *Bedford 222-8)

*Durham 201-8 (C Gaffney 103) (55 overs), St Peter’s, York 203-7

Sedbergh 203, *Shrewsbury 206-1 (R. Lewis 109*)

Felsted 342-3 (40 overs) (H Gallian 165), *Brentwood 303-6

*Ipswich 102-9 (20 overs), The Leys 102-1

 

National Schools Under 18 T20

South East

Semi Finals

St Lawrence 63, Seaford 64-0

Hurstpierpoint 139-8, *Bede’s 131-4

 

Final

Hurstpierpoint 153-6, Seaford 59

 

Hurstpierpoint meet the winners of the North London v South London Final

 

South London

Group 1

Whitgift 190-8, Epsom 147-6

Alleyns 35, Whitgift 39-0

Whitgift win the group

 

Group 2

Caterham 92, St Georges, Weybridge 93-5

St Georges win the group

 

Group 3

Hampton win the group

 

Group 4

Trinity win the group

 

Semi finals

Hampton v Trinity

Whitgift v St Georges

 

South Central

 

Group 2

Lord Wandsworth 121-8, Wellington College 122-8

Group 6

Winchester 158-5, RGS High Wycombe 56

 

Soth West

Tier 1

*Clifton College 165-4 (S Sainsbury 106), SGSC 73 all out

*Milfield School 119-8, Kings Taunton 123-3

Wellington School 82-8, *Clifton College 83-3

*Blundells 152-5, SGS 111-5

 

Tier 2 Competition

 

Canford 248-2 (J Barker 157 ), *Bryanston 64-4

Canford win by DLS method

Truro and Penwith College 250-3 (off 17 overs) Shebbear College 87-5 (17)

Truro and Penwith College 158-3 (20) Mount Kelly 152-5 (20)

Queen’s, Taunton 170-5, Bryanston 52

North

North East

Group 6

Newcastle School for Boys 141-7, RGS Newcastle 86

Barnard Castle 141-8, Durham School 144-7

Final: Durham 196-2 (Callum Brown 115), Newcastle SB  133-9

 

 

 

East

Group 4

Felsted 180-6, The Perse 146-9

The Leys 119-5, *Bedford 120-5

 

Group 2

*Rugby 154-8, Uppingham 120-8

Oundle 89, *Rugby 93-2

Stamford 165-6, Oundle 107-9

Rugby 124 for 6, Stamford 126 for 6

 

Stamford win the Group

 

Group 4

Felsted 180-6, The Perse 146-9

The Leys 119-5, *Bedford 120-5

 

 

West Midlands

Qualifier

Wycliffe 77, Dean Close 82-2

 

Group 1

To be played on 15th May at Shrewsbury

 

Group 2

Wrekin 78, *Bromsgrove 79-0

KEVI, Stratford upon Avon 32, *Bromsgrove 33-1

Bromsgrove win the group

 

Group 3

Kings’ Worcester 125-8, Dean Close 110

*RGS Worcester 134-6, Llandaff 123-6

Final: Kings, Worcester 142-4, *RGS Worcester 113-7

Kings win the group

Group 4

*Malvern College 216 -1 (T Boorman 100*), Warwick 99 all out ( J Cox 5-15)

Warwick 172-4, Hereford CS 161-5

Hereford 75 ( J Harrison 5-5), Malvern 80 for 2

Monmouth withdrew

Malvern win the group

 

Round 2

Kings Worcester v Warwick

Malvern v RGS

Bromsgrove v Group 1 Runner

Group 1 Winner v Wrekin

 

Matches to be completed by Friday 27th May

 

The Cricket Paper National Under 17 Cup

 

Preliminary Round

Forest 268-9, Brentwood 232

 

First round

*Shrewsbury 224-3, Kings Worcester 167-6

*St Edwards 188-9, Aldenham 100

Eton 132,*Harrow 133-2

Queen Ethelburga’s 105, Newcastle Boys 109 for 0

Kirkham GS 78-8, Sedbergh79-1

Bristol GS 131, Monmouth 132-1

Millfield 113-8, Queens Taunton 94

Queen Mary’s Walsall 97-8, Ellesmere 98-1

Whitgift 157-5, Epsom 67-4

Ipswich 103 all out, Gresham’s 104-2

Myersocough, Old Trafford w/o Kings, Macclesfield (withdrew)

Queen Mary’s, Walsall 97-8, Ellesmere 98-1

Abingdon w/o Hitchin Boys (withdrew)

Merchant Taylors’, Northwood bt Radley (scores unknown)

 

Girls Cricket

 

Shrewsbury 197-3, *Sedbergh 57

 

 

 

Schools Cricket Online