Thursday, 24 June 2021

Big hitting Hayden helps league champions win challenge trophy

AS reigning Premier Division champions, PEPPARD STOKE ROW faced a strong REPRESENTATIVE XI on Sunday

AS reigning Premier Division champions, PEPPARD STOKE ROW faced a strong REPRESENTATIVE XI on Sunday on Peppard Common in a 40 overs-a-side match for the Wintech Berkshire League Champions Challenge Trophy.

Winning the toss and batting first, the early losses of Richard Ashton and Will Legg were a setback but were offset by Andy Watts and Sean Thornton compiling a steady 42 stand before Watts became the third wicket for Jeff Cluett.

This brought in Dan Hayden who changed Peppard’s fortunes by bludgeoning the ball to, and over, all parts. He added 32 with Thornton (38) for the fourth wicket. Chris De Verteuill was out to an under edge nick but skipper Paddy Hennessy and Hayden added 70 until Hennessy was run out by a direct hit.

Hayden’s final total of 127, off only 99 balls, comprised 15 fours and five sixes and, when he was caught on the boundary â?? one of four catches by Representative skipper Nick Kingston â?? the total of 229 gave the hosts something to bowl at. The remaining wickets fell quickly with overs running out and the final total of 244 looked tight against a strong batting line-up.

Adam Birch and Nick Kingston began in sprightly fashion, reaching 45 off six overs until Dan Hayden got his revenge by catching Kingston (16), also on the boundary. Kokhar followed quickly but Alex Sykes helped Birch (34 off 26 balls) to 76 in only the 10th over.

Sykes and Marc Teal reached 117 before Teal (27 off 16) became the first of four victims for Dan Hayden who then bowled Dan Bird early on. When Sykes (36) was out with the total 130 in the 20th over, things looked precarious for the Representatives.

Woodcote’s Will Macdonald changed all that with an assured 64 from 47 deliveries, including nine fours and a six, which broke the pavilion clock. It came as a surprise when he mistimed a pull to be caught by bowler, Will Legg.

Cluett (36 off 51 balls) took his side to within sight of victory but the remaining wickets fell cheaply to leave Peppard Stoke Row victors by 10 runs and only the second team to beat the Representative XI in the annual challenge.

At teatime, a presentation was made by the Wintech Berkshire League chairman, Eddie Lunn, to Peppard Stoke Row batsman, Andy Watts who earlier in the season became the all-time top run scorer in the league.

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