Tuesday July 2nd 2013

It is not often that a batsman scores a double hundred in a one-day game and ends up on the losing side. That?s what happened to South African Under-19 player David Bedingham who scored 212 not out from 122 balls for Colston Bassett CC against Ratcliffe. A toal of 297 for seven from 40 overs would have been daunting from 50, but the Ratcliffe team, who number Luke Wright (Sussex and England) among their old boys, set to and overcame the target with 15 balls to spare. Centuries were scored by Ben Shaw (144) and Dominic Warne (101 not out) to reach 303 for three.

This column has twice this year offered condolences to batsmen dismissed just short of a century. Spare a thought, then, for Tom Smith of Clifton who ran out of balls to reach his double century. He shared an opening stand of 200 at Sherborne with Hamish Matthews (57), and moved from 150 to 198 in 19 balls. Needing two from the last ball of the fifty overs he scored only one and was stranded on 199 not out in a total of 311 for two, the highest individual innings reported so far this year. Sherborne managed only 214 all out in reply, in other circumstances quite a respectable score.

In a reversal of the former pattern which lasted until the early 1970s, the last couple of weeks of the summer term (which used to be the last two weeks of July, at that) can now be given over to cricket when formerly this briefish spot was reserved for end-of-year public exams. It ought to be revived, of course, because nobody seems to have noticed that we have nowadays lost three whole terms of serious teaching in the final three years of secondary schooling. All for the sake of one year group, those proposing to go to University in October of the year they leave school.

The game between Merchant Taylors? Northwood and Dr Challoners? Grammar School was a typical low-scoring thriller. Merchant Taylors?, at home, collapsed from 60 for one to 105 all out, most of the damage being done by the spinners as well as a most unusual wicket (see below). Tight bowling and a sharp run-out kept Merchant Taylors? in the game but at 94 for six, with plenty of overs left, a win for Challoner?s seemed a formality. Howver,? medium-pacer Ashil Shah returned to clean up the tail and dismiss the visitors for 99. One incident in the game provides a puzzle for cricket-lovers and armchair umpires. Kavir Vedd?s running (for Merchant Taylors’) was hampered by a hamstring injury, and he eventually called for a runner. Drama ensued as he hit a single: his runner and partner completed the run, and he was wandering off to take up his position at square leg without taking a step back into his crease when the quick-witted keeper Matt O?Regan removed the bails. Definitely out ? but stumped or run-out, and to which end does the new batsman go? Answers not on the traditional postcard but by email please!

Dulwich have had a disappointing run recently, and at Bedford on Thursday morning, things appeared to be repeating themselves. The home side openers, Charlie Thurston and Paddy McDuell, put on 107 for the first wicket in 18 overs, and the run rate continued to rise as they finished their 40 overs with 260 for seven. Dulwich spectators set themselves for more frustration as they watched their side become 18 for two in just six overs of the second innings. However, School Captain (not the team?s) Alistair Neden, promoted from the lower middle order because of a team-mate’s ill health, came in at number four. Neden, by his own admission more of a rugby-playing golfer than a natural cricketer, proceeded to plunder 175 from 126 deliveries, including eight extremely well-timed sixes. Thus Dulwich made 130 off the last ten overs and caused a nail-biting finish as the visitors? side reached the target with just one ball to spare – a victory which robbed Bedford of an unbeaten season.

Haberdashers? Aske?s have revived their season after a heavy loss to Abingdon a few weeks ago. Last weekend their captain Tom Colverd followed up his century the previous week against Magdalen College School with another, this time against Bancroft’s. In a flawless display, he batted throughout the innings, reaching three figures in the final over and then, also as last week, striking the next two deliveries for six, finishing with 116 not out. With wickets in hand, Habs scored 64 runs off the last five overs, to reach 249 for two in 45 overs. This ultimately was to prove decisive as in reply Bancroft’s began slowly but accelerated nicely after the half-way point. After 40 overs they were one run ahead of Habs at the same point, but had lost more wickets.The Bancroft’s opener Vikram Handa also completed a fine century but when he was dismissed for 103 their hopes finally evaporated and they finished on 217 for nine.

Victories against MCC are rather more common these days than they used to be, but are still highly prized by schools. Wellingborough were denied by the rain which came four overs before the scheduled close (a game reduced to 35 overs already because of rain) when they needed only 18 runs with four wickets down chasing MCC?s 146 for eight. The next day, the school?s captain Charlie Macdonell, mentioned in previous columns for his batting, startled Bablake. Having batted for all but one ball with a score of 80 out of 161 for eight in 35 overs, he came on first change to take five for three in 2.1 overs to skittle Bablake for just 26.

The last school to reach Finals day of the National Twenty20 competition was decided only yesterday (Monday July 1st) when in a thrilling regional final King?s Taunton overcame Portsmouth Grammar School. 122 for eight played 112 for 9. Interestingly, of the four schools left, only Bede?s have progressed fairly smoothly to Finals Day. As reported last week (June 25th), King?s survived the first round only because of the West Country system of allowing the runners-up in the first round a second chance. Bolton beat Sedbergh (national semi-finalists in 2011 and 2012) by the narrowest of margins in the play-offs, finishing on level scores but losing five wickets to Sedbergh?s six. And Shrewsbury seemed a gonner when they succumbed to Denstone in the play-offs, only for Denstone then to lose to The Royal Grammar School, Worcester and force serious calculations of Net Run Rate which narrowly saw Shrewsbury through.

Results:

*Denstone 212-9 (50 overs), Manchester GS 214-8
Bristol GS 117, *King’s Taunton 118-1
Brentwood 197-6 dec, *Ipswich 166-7
Bedford 245-8 dec, *Oakham 169-5
*Denstone 137-9 (40 overs), Cheadle Hulme 138-9
MCC 211-3 dec (R Wakeford 119), *Lancing College 214-5 (N Ballamy135 not out)
*Dauntsey’s 221, Wiltshire Queries 225-4 (T Shaw 121 not out)
Clifton 311-2 (50 overs)(T Smith 199 not out), *Sherborne 214
*Ratcliffe 42 – 0 v Wisbech GS (rain)
Colston Bassett CC 297-7 (40 overs) (D Bedingham 212 not out), *Ratcliffe 303?3 (B Shaw 144, D Warne 101 not out)
Beechen Cliff 179-9 (40 overs), *Dauntsey’s 181-7 (Peak Sports League)
*Shrewsbury 178 (50 overs), Uppingham 121
Bristol GS 209-9 (40 overs), *Blundell’s 213-6
*Queen Elzabeth?s Hospital 123, Bristol GS 124-6
Harrow 279-8 (55 overs), *Malvern 283-7
*Bedford 260-7 (40 overs), Dulwich 261-8 (A Neden 175)
Holcott Arcadians CC 186-6 (40 overs), *Oakham 17-0 (rain)
Menlo Park, Pretoria 106-3 (50 overs) v *Shrewsbury (rain)
Framlingham 190 9 dec, *Felsted 192-5
Leopards (RSA) 122 (40 overs) (M Crane 5-4), *Lancing 123-7
*Eton 339 (J Gnodde 117, J Halstead 114), Melbourne GS (Aus) 278 (C Griffin 6-60)
St Andrew’s (RSA) 324-5 (50 overs), *Eton 265 (E James 101)
* RGS Newcastle 90, Durham 94-3
Framlingham 190-9 dec, *Felsted 192-5
*Dauntsey?s 283-8 dec, XL Club 54-1 (rain)
MCC 236-9 dec, *Woodhouse Grove 155-3
*Ampleforth 178-8 dec, Woodhouse Grove 179-4
*Woodhouse Grove 91-1 v Assumption College Melbourne (rain)
*Merchant Taylors? 105 (35 overs), Dr Challoner?s GS 99
*Dulwich 257-9 (50 overs), Sydney GS (Aus) 127
Magdalen College School 98, *St Edward’s Oxford 99-2
*Shrewsbury 165-4 (20 overs), Kent Street HS, Perth 121-7
Dauntsey’s 158 (40 overs), *Kingswood 121 (Peak Sports League)
*Monmouth 203-7 (45 overs), King’s Taunton 204-7
Bristol GS 117 (40 overs), *King’s Taunton 119-1
*Clifton 197-8 (50 overs), *King’s Taunton 198-1
*Haberdashers’ Aske’s 249-2 (45 overs) (T Colverd 116 not out), Bancroft’s 217-9 (V Handa 103)
Bedford 198-8 dec, *St Albans 135
*Haberdashers’ Aske’s 242-9 (50 overs), Old Haberdashers’ CC 228-7
Norwich 113 (P Young 5-24 ), *Ipswich 115-3
St Benedict?s Ealing 164, *Merchant Taylors?, Northwood 64
RGS Worcester 190 (50 overs), *Nottingham HS 131
Bedford Modern 237-8 (40 overs) (H Thurstance 164 not out), *Wisbech GS 149-9
MCC 146-8 (35 overs), *Wellingborough 128-4 (rain)
*Wellingborough 161-8 (35 overs), Bablake 26 (C Macdonell 5-3)
Bristol GS 144-9 (40 overs), *West Buckland 145-8
SGS (Filton) 300 (44.4 overs) v *Bristol Grammar School (rain)
MCC 160, *Clayesmore 123 (O Powell 5-27, T Davies 5-38)
Old Ratcliffians 254-7 (dec), *Ratcliffe 159-9

National Under-17 semi-final
*Shrewsbury 214-3 (40 overs), Bromsgrove 175-9 (C Kidson 5-55)

National Twenty20 competition

South West and South Central region final
King?s Taunton 122-8, Portsmouth GS 112-9
King?s Taunton win a place on finals day at Arundel Friday July 5th

Finals day order of play at Arundel Castle ground, Friday July 5th:

10am First semi-final: Bolton v Shrewsbury

1pm (approx) Second semi-final: Bede?s v King?s Taunton

4pm (approx) Finals