Day of the underdogs

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St Helier – who beat Centurions in the S E Guy Memorial trophy final earlier this week – were restricted to 104 all out by some excellent Beeches bowling, Morfee having something of a purple patch and finishing with 5 for 21 off his three overs and Huckle taking three wickets for the loss of 11 runs.But Beeches’ batsmen were less prolific and the Saints bowlers – Shane Whitwell and Chris Searson in particular – made sure of success taking 4 for 12 off 2.2 overs and 3 for 14 respectively, with Beeches all out for 81.’We fielded well, but our batsmen were just not performing,’ Beeches’ Peter Scott said.

‘They bowled very well, and while we’re disappointed with the result, credit to them, they played better.’St Helier captain Mick Poulter said: ‘We thought if we got to 100 runs we’d have the chance of something to bowl at, and in the first six or seven overs we forced them to take risks and it paid off.

We played to our strengths and Shane, Chris and Dave Thomas bowled fantastically – and Shane was a late replacement and only knew at three o’clock that he was playing!’In the other match Peter Canham and Peter Keylock gave Abacus a good start but a good spell of bowling by Peter Brooks (19 runs off three overs) for the Centurions never allowed the Abacus top order to dominate.

Elanco bowled with great speed and accuracy, taking 3 for 25, while Dave Gorman, who made the ball swing, took two wickets in his two overs for 23.

Abacus were all out for 120, setting a modest target for a Centurions victory.However, Centurions were rocked back on their heels after losing their top order cheaply, with great bowling from Richard Parker and Ritchie (1 for 27 and 2 for 10 respectively).Missing Druce, McKeever and Smith, the last recognised batsman, Joel Richardson, went in at number four and scored 76 from 40 balls including seven sixes and four boundaries in an attempt to dig his team out of what appeared to be certain defeat.The game ended in great tension after Richardson was caught in the 13th over, with Centurions down to their eighth wicket, but Peter Brooks and Mathew Sun scampered for the last five runs to secure Centurions their place in the final.’We never expected to win, we had only two recognised batsmen.

‘I was very pleased with our bowling but Joel (Richardson) was the star.

We lost four or five wickets for about 30 runs but Joel was there to the end, it was a real captain’s innings,’ said Elanco.Poulter and Elanco both said they are looking forward to next Thursday’s final.’We’ve played them three times and won twice so we fancy our chances,’ Poulter said.

Elanco commented: ‘It should be a good game and it would be nice to win – sweet revenge.’The final takes place on Thursday 10 July at Grainville, starting at 6 pm.

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