CRICKETER CUP SEMI-FINALS SUNDAY 28 JULY 2019
Both semi-finals were completed and the final of the Cricketer Cup will be between Old Tonbridgians and Oundle Rovers.
In their game at Tonbridge, Charterhouse Friars won the toss and batted which did not prove to be a good decision on a wicket that was basically good but gave some help to both seam and spin. Without Ollie Batchelor, their main run-scorer in previous rounds, their batting never coped with the hostility and accuracy of the Old Tonbridgians’ bowling. Hugo Snape bowled an incisive opening spell of 1-15 in 7 overs, well supported by Toby Pettman whose 10 overs only cost 27 runs. When the second wicket fell in the fourteenth over, the score was only 26. The Tonbridge spinners then went to work as the Charterhouse innings virtually ground to a halt. The off-spin of Marcus O’Riordan took 4-9 in 6 overs, Tom Coldman’s off-spin 2-10 in 8 overs and Fabian Cowdrey’s slow left-arm 3-11 in 10 overs. The highest Charterhouse score was by James Hamblin with 15, and extras next with 14. Charterhouse were finally put out of their misery in the 42nd over for an undefendable 77. Fabian Cowdrey and Ant Shales made a bright start, putting on 42, but 3 wickets then fell cheaply before Tonbridge won in the 15th over, Cowdrey finishing with 43 not out.
In the second semi-final, Oundle Rovers finally managed to win a game at Malvern at the fifth time of trying. Oundle won the toss and were indebted to Ben Graves for a blistering start. The innings was then consolidated by a 135 run partnership between Johansen (58) and Greg Smith (70). At 197-2 after 40 overs, they were heading for a very big score, but Old Malvernians pegged them back to 249-7, with Ahmed the most successful bowler with 3-40. Only Charlie Fernandes of the middle order made headway with 28 not out. The Malvern innings never really flourished and they were 111-6 after 31 overs, finally succumbing for 169 in the 45th over. The spinners Street and Ramsden were the pick of Oundle’s bowlers, assisted by good fielding and a wicket that became harder as the game progressed.
Old Tonbridgians are the most successful side in the history of the competition with 15 wins, but they have not reached the final since their win in 2013. Oundle Rovers are fourth in the Order of Merit and their last final appearance was in 2010 when they lost to Old Malvernians. The last time these two sides met in the final was in 2007 when Tonbridge won by 67 runs. The loyalties of Tim Elliott, Chairman of both the Cricketer Cup and the Oundle Rovers, will be tested as his son Tom is likely to play for Tonbridge.
The Final of the Cricketer Cup will be played at Arundel Castle on Sunday 11 August between Old Tonbridgians and Oundle Rovers. All are welcome for 11.30 start.