Iraq stars for Congresbury with unbeaten century

PUBLISHED: 10:37 11 August 2017 | UPDATED: 10:43 11 August 2017

Iraq Thomas.

Iraq Thomas.

Archant

Congresbury’s overseas star Iraq Thomas smashed an unbeaten century off just 39 balls as his side comfortable beat Shirehampton.

Iraq Thomas blasted an unbeaten century off just 39 deliveries to lead Congresbury to victory over Shirehampton at King George V Playing Field.

Thomas was given excellent support by Stuart Castle (57), Jack Kearns (41) and Jos Thomlinson (36) as the hosts posted 278-8 in their 45 overs.

The bowlers shared the spoils as Shire were bowled out for just 166, with Will Eyres claiming three wickets on debut.

Congresbury skipper Sam Evans lost the toss and were made to bat on a slightly damp wicket. However, Congresbury made a solid start before losing Ian Perry (5) and Under-17 Somerset player Cameron Harding for 10.

However, Castle and Kearns dug in to give Congresbury a solid base from which the Congresbury middle-order could launch an assault. This did not immediately go to plan as the hosts lost Castle, Kearns, Vowles (4) and Sam Kearns (6) in quick succession.

However, Thomlinson joined Thomas at the crease and the pair played in an aggressive manner that took the Shire attack by surprise.

Thomas launched a number of sixes that sent people on a nearby street running for cover, but Thomlinson also played his part with aggressive yet controlled innings.

Thomlinson was bowled of the final delivery, but that still left Shire with a sizeable target of 279 for victory.

After tea the visitors were extremely slow to get going. This was down to the quality of bowling from Harding and Martin Ford early on, who again were too good for most of the batsmen.

Evans introduced Thomas into the attack and he immediately removed Sowati for 10.

By now the required run rate had increased to nearly 10 an over and things were becoming desperate for Shire.

They were given no let-up as Sam Kearns bowled nine overs of excellent leg-spin which included two wickets and he arguably deserved more.

Captain Evans was quite expensive, but he did claim the vital wicket of Harvey Summers, Shirehampton’s captain and best batsman.

John Stilwell (79) and Adam Geddes (31) gave Shire some respectability, paying some aggressive shots, but in truth they were never in the hunt.

Eyres came into the attack needing three wickets to give Congresbury maximum points and he duly delivered removing one bowled and two caught behind.

Congresbury are now three wins clear of Frenchay in second place and will travel there full of confidence on Saturday.

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