Seasiders play their part in exciting encounter against Somerset XI
PUBLISHED: 09:11 25 August 2017 | UPDATED: 09:11 25 August 2017
Weston fell just four runs short against a Somerset XI in a James Hildreth benefit year match, which also raised fund for charity.
Weston hosted Somerset County Cricket Club for a T20 match as part of James Hildreth’s benefit year, raising money for Children’s Hospice South West.
Weston lost the toss and were asked to bowl at the Somerset stars. Young Weston bowler Tom Chambers struck early to remove Eddie Byrom for five in the second over, caught by another promising young player, Jack Press.
With former Somerset and South African international player Charl Willoughby removing James Hildreth for a duck, superbly caught by Ryan Davies, in the next over, Somerset looked to be in trouble.
Local favourite Pete Trego (31) came to the rescue in a partnership of 41 with Matt Maynard (28), but it was club captain Tom Abell, batting at six, who excelled. He raced to 54 off just 27 balls, particularly attacking the left-arm spin of Ashley Allen.
George Bartlett batted with Abell in a partnership of 54 and finished the match 39 not out as Somerset posted a competitive score of 178-6.
Weston opened with Simon Green and keeper John Davidson. While Davidson fell in the sixth over for nine, ending a partnership of 32, Green raced to 41 off 37 balls and posted a partnership of 63 with Ryan Davies.
Davies was the star of the show, hitting 69 off just 33 balls, including three consecutive sixes off Dutch international Paul van Meekeren, before being caught in the deep on the fourth ball of the over.
Paddy Howes, Chris Davidson and Shabil Ahmed struggled slightly against Somerset’s first class bowling attack, scoring at a decent rate, but mostly in singles.
Going into the final over, Weston needed six runs to win, but Tim Groenewald bowled a tight over, taking the wicket of Ahmed and only conceding one run to see Somerset to victory by four runs.
With 16 sixes and 26 fours hit in the game and some superb fielding, including two run outs, the crowd were well entertained. Forte Financial man of the match went to Ryan Davies.
E Byrom c Press b Chambers 5
P Trego c Howes b Allen 31
J Hildreth c Davies b Willoughby 0
M Maynard c&b Howes 28
C Overton b C Davidson 1
T Abell run out 54
G Bartlett not out 39
T Rouse not out 11
Total (6 wkts) 178
Bowling: C Willoughby 4-0-27-1; T Chambers 4-0-29-1; A Allen 4-0-34-1; C Davidson 4-0-45-1; P Howes 4-0-40-1.
S Green c Overton b Waller 41
J Davidson run out 9
R Davies c Rouse b Van Meekeren 69
P Howes c Rouse b Waller 8
C Davidson lbw Rouse 14
S Ahmed b Groenewald 9
R Turner not out 12
A Allen not out 0
Total (6 wkts) 174
Bowling: P Van Meekeren 4-0-52-1; C Overton 3-0-20-0; T Groenewald 4-0-18-1; T Abell 2-0-24-0; M Waller 4-0-37-2; J Hildreth 1-0-16-0; T Rouse 2-0-7-1.
Back in league action, Weston suffered a setback in their promotion chase away at Temple Cloud.
The team arrived at the ground to find that heavy overnight rain had got under the covers, making the wicket unplayable. The umpires delayed the start of the match by almost two hours to allow it time to dry.
However, when play commenced it quickly became obvious that conditions were far from ideal, with the ball going through at either ankle height or more often around the batsmen’s ears.
Simon Green fell on eight and Andrew Fear followed shortly afterwards for 18. With Shabil Ahmed and Jon Lambert soon joining them back on the bench, Pete Trego and Paddy Howes tried to take on the bowlers and, with the help of a lot of wides, Weston made it to 69-4 at the end of the 18th over.
At this point the umpires decided that conditions were not improving and the players were at risk, and abandoned the match.
This abandonment gave Weston just six points. North Perrott, Weston’s only rivals for the league title, played a full match at Bridgwater and won. Their 20 points from that match has cut Weston’s lead at the top of the table to just seven points with two matches, at home against Chard on Saturday and away to North Petherton on September 2, remaining.
While still all but in their own hands, Weston must win both of these matches to ensure they take the title and win promotion.
This weekend sees all four sides in league action. The first XI host Chard in a key game in the battle for the title, while the 2nds travel to Burnham knowing they must win if they are to be in with a chance of promotion.
The 3rds travel to Temple Cloud, again in a vital game, while the 4ths slim chances of a top two finish are dependent on beating Wedmore 2nds on the East Ground. As always, spectators are welcome at all games.