IT HAS not been unknown for the Church Times Cricket Cup to be affected by inclement weather. Happily, on Monday, across the dioceses, group matches were played in glorious sunshine.
Coventry took on Norwich/Ely at the picturesque ground at Orton Longueville, in Cambridgeshire. Both teams were reduced to 9 players, owing to late cry offs — but the energy and enthusiasm of those who showed up more than made up for this.
Coventry batted first, clocking up an impressive 189 for 4, with most of the runs contributed by Moffatt (74), Gandon, the captain, (45), and Budd (39 n.o.). Smith excelled among the Norwich bowlers, taking 3 wickets for 35.
In reply, Norwich struggled against some tight Coventry bowling. N. Parker and J. Parker had the most impressive figures, taking 2 for 14 and 2 for 19 respectively. Coventry’s fielders also played their part, especially Budd, who took a sparkling catch off Gandon at Gulley. Norwich finished on 106,handing victory to Coventry.
London, last year’s winners, played St Albans at Sunbury CC. Batting first, London made a sound start, putting 28 on the board in the first three overs; but they were derailed in the fourth over when Beeby was caught from behind for 5, followed by Lee being clean bowled two balls later. A hundred partnership from Allerton and Moffatt (junior) saw off a collapse, but they then fell, in quick succession, for 72 and 44 respectively. The side’s middle order then stepped up, taking London to a total of 257 for 9 from the 35 overs.
In reply, St Albans lost some early wickets (Middlebrookfor 1 and J. Iqbal for 0). Gibbs showed resilience before being bowled for 29, leaving it to the middle order to chase the runs. It proved too much, however, and St Albans finished the 35 overs on 84 for 7. London remains the side to beat.
At Sulhampstead, Oxford played Winchester/Chichester. Oxford batted first, and found that a slow pitch made for few runs for the first nine overs, during which two wickets fell for just 29 runs. There followed, however, a 90-run partnership between Digby (64) and Johnson (25), helping Oxford to reach 137 for 7 off the 35 overs. Wharton bowled usefully for Winchester, taking 3 for 11.
In reply, Winchester were all out for 89, off 27.3 overs.
Peterborough faced Leicester at Weldon CC. Peterborough went to the crease first, putting on 24 for the first wicket. This was followed by a flurry of wickets, including an extraordinary over from Pitt (3 for 3), featuring a caught and bowled, and two batsmen clean bowled. Peterborough ended their innings 47 all out. In reply, Leicester were in trouble at 25 for 4, owing to tight bowling from Reith (3 for 19). But opener Brockbank (9 n.o.) and Norman (16 n.o.) saw Leicester to victory.
At Elland Cricket Ground, Leeds took on arch rivals Manchester. Leeds batted first, with several players putting in solid performances, including Carew (32), Buttanshaw (31), and Arnold (28), helping the side to reach 186 for 9. Cowling, Thompson, and Gill each took two wickets. Manchester made a promising start in reply, but strong bowling from Leeds (including three wickets taken by Christian and two by Buttenshaw) reduced them to 63 all out.
Coventry 189 for 4 (Moffatt 74, Gandon 45, Budd 39 n.o.; Smith 3 for 35, Haywood 1 for 28, Capron 1 for 41). Norwich/Ely 106 (Mulberak 25, Capron 15, Tyler 13 n.o.; N. Parker 2 for 14, Hammond 1 for 16, Mort 1 for 28, J. Parker 2 for 19, Gandon 1 for 9). Coventry won by 103 runs.
London 257 for 9 (Allerton 72, Moffatt 44; Prior 2 for 25, Burt 3 for 49). St Albans 84 for 7 (Kendall 2 for 4, Knowles 3 for 15). London won by 173 runs.
Oxford 136 for 7 (Diby 64, Johnson 25; Wharton 3 for 11, Swindells 0 for 28, Etheridge 0 for 17). Winchester/Chichester 89 all out (Etheridge 23; Glenny 3 for 15). Oxford won by 47 runs.
Peterborough 47 all out (Youngerman 13; Pitt 3 for 3, Ransley 2 for 26). Leicester 48 for 4 (Norman 16 n.o., Brockbank 9 n.o.; Reith 3 for 19). Leicester won by 7 wickets.
Leeds 186 for 9 (Carew 32, Buttanshaw 31, Arnold 28). Manchester 63 all out. Leeds won by 123 runs.