The regional semi-finals of the Persimmon Village Cup took place on Sunday as teams edge ever closer to the national rounds – and, whisper it, the Lord’s final.
Home advantage paid dividends in Derbyshire as Holmesfield edged out Brailsford & Ednaston having lost fewer wickets. Jimmy Pearson starred for the home side with 114 as they made 223-8 from their 40 overs. An opening partnership of 91 had the visitors well set before wickets started to fall. Tom Hall was the last man out, run out off the final ball of the game.
Another nail-bitter took place in Berkshire, Pinkeys Green winning by one wicket – with one ball to spare – as they reached Purley on Thames’ target of 207. Needing seven from 12 with four wickets in hand, it looked a simple task. But with their last two senior batsmen departing in the penultimate over it was left to three young colts – Jake Stokes, Warren Hendry and Ben Purchese – to see Pinkeys Green home.
Yet another close one in Sussex, where there were a couple of eye-catching upsets. Rottingdean (183-8) beat last year’s regional champs and 2007 Lord’s finalists, Findon, by three runs. And in Essex, Mistley (160-7) knocked out last year’s quarter-finalists Bentley (159-5).
An odd-looking scorecard in Devon: Lewdown’s Mark Gibbs scored 62 of the 77 runs his club needed to beat Malborough Moonrakers, 50 of his runs coming in boundaries. His three partners at the crease contributed one, three and three.
Elsewhere, Barby in Northamptonshire are through after a 41-run win over Stockton (146). And finally, it’s goodnight from Chaddesley Corbett. They depart after a 175-run defeat to Colwall, who amassed 375-6 from their 40 overs – largely thanks to Oliver Davey (pictured above) who scored 100 off just 36 balls.
David Currie is the publishing assistant of The Cricketer