Congresbury lose out in derby thriller

CONGRESBURY were involved in a tremendous derby against Claverham, the match just edged by the visitors. Winning the toss and batting, Claverham were given a flying start. Some loose deliveries were punished well by Horton and Thorpe. The introduction of

CONGRESBURY were involved in a tremendous derby against Claverham, the match just edged by the visitors.

Winning the toss and batting, Claverham were given a flying start. Some loose deliveries were punished well by Horton and Thorpe. The introduction of Frost and Evans put the brakes on as Horton was caught well at cover by Frost off Evans for 32. Thorpe was then went for a well timed 50 and the hosts began to inch their way back into the game.

Only 15 runs were scored in the next 10 overs as Devanny and Paul Bird were contained well . The dismissal of Devanny for 20, bowled by the returning Baker, brought Matt Davis to the crease and he and Bird increased the run rate before Bird was caught for a patient 44. Wickets then fell rapidly towards the end of the innings, with Matt Davis, dismissed off the last ball for 32, a typically fluent knock, as the innings ended on 228-9.

In reply, Kieran Palmer was removed early by Isack for six. Clint Harding and Tim Baker battled hard, and put together a significant partnership. Harding produced some powerful shots to reached his maiden 1st XI 50.


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Baker also batted well for 36. Mike Fisher, in positive mood, hit a number of early boundaries to keep the scoreboard ticking. He was eventually dismissed to a tired-looking shot for a promising 73. Fisher and Nick Clifton took the score sensibly to 180-3, with Congresbury needing just under one run per ball. Fisher then had a rush of blood and disappointingly had a wild swing off Isack and was bowled for 44.

Clifton struck a couple of sweet boundaries before he too was bowled by Isack for 17. With the pressure mounting, it was a matter of which side could hold their nerve. Ian Perry hit two fours before holing out going for a third in the same over, Stuart Castle was caught going for a big hit and Neal Frost went leg before.

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This left Congresbury with 14 to get in two overs with two wickets left. To heighten the drama, Sam Evans played an audacious reverse sweep for four which had both sides and spectators gasping, before he was stumped. Steve Baker hit a single off his first ball, but Paul Brean was unable to get the single required off the last ball to face the last over.

Steve Baker was then stumped off the first ball of the final over as Claverham celebrated an eight run victory. Henry Isack showed admirable effort to pick up 5-77, while James Downes and James Bird also bowled well.

It was a terrific match played in an excellent spirit in front of a large crowd, with many of the players having faced each other many times.

Congresbury are away to promotion candidates Chipping Sodbury on Saturday in the final league game of the season.

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