En­field fi­nal ball drama ends in a tie

Accrington Observer - - ADULT SERVICES 18+ -

LES BAR­LOW

NOR­DEN had their big­gest crowd of the sea­son on Sun­day for En­field’s visit – but most were only there for the tele­vised Eng­land match.

Those who con­cen­trated on the cricket saw a topsy turvy match be­tween Stags and En­field which even­tu­ally ended in a tie.

Nor­den looked sure win­ners when they re­duced the vis­i­tors to 70 for seven, but En­field re­cov­ered to an all out 184.

The re­ply saw Stags tot­ter­ing at 12 for four, but Do­minic Humphreys, Dan Buck­ley and Greg But­ter­worth, aided by a late flurry from Ja­son Collin, meant Nor­den needed two to win off the last ball of the 50 overs.

The bats­men lev­elled the scores, but But­ter­worth could not get back for the win­ner, so it was nine points for each team (seven each for the tie, and two each for bowl­ing out the op­po­si­tion).

En­field won the toss and de­cided to bat. They reached 29 with only one half chance hav­ing been of­fered, but Lee Crab­tree then took a catch be­hind and Nor­den were on their way.

Vis­it­ing pro­fes­sional Pussegolla man­aged only four be­fore going to a catch by Do­minic Humphreys, and Adam Bracewell failed to score be­fore slic­ing a shot into the hands of Jake Sand­ham.

Opener Greg Jones had pun­ished the poorer de­liv­er­ies and was on 52 out of 68 when he was trapped leg be­fore by Do­minic Humphreys whose im­pres­sive 10-over spell saw him take three for 18.

Cook failed to score, Wrigley man­aged two, Ali did like­wise, and En­field were 70 for seven. It promised to be an early tea, but the re­main­ing bats­men gave En­field hope.

Barker scored 29 off 53 de­liv­er­ies, Fer­gus Bai­ley hit 40 off 67, and Sam Cook was un­beaten on 27. It all added up to what had seemed a most un­likely tar­get for Nor­den to chase.

Greg But­ter­worth bowled his max­i­mum 15 overs and took three for 51, while Jake Sand­ham cap­tured three for 67.

The re­ply started badly for Nor­den. Some were not happy with de­ci­sions, but the facts were that Josh Tol­ley was leg be­fore for a duck, Lee Crab­tree was bowled for a duck, Har­vey Fit­ton was caught be­hind for a duck, and Jake Sand­ham charged Pussegolla, missed, and was stumped for two.

It needed a bit of some­thing special to turn the tide, and it came in a part­ner­ship be­tween Do­minic Humphreys and Dan Buck­ley.

Humphreys was caught be­hind af­ter graft­ing for 22 off 55 de­liv­er­ies. That made it 51 for five, but the seeds of re­cov­ery had been sewn, and the next part­ner­ship be­tween Buck­ley and But­ter­worth took the to­tal up to 140.

Both bat­ted bril­liantly, but hav­ing scored 55 off 107 de­liv­er­ies Buck­ley was given run out.

But­ter­worth con­tin­ued the fight, but lost the help of Hashum Ma­lik who was leg be­fore to Pussegolla and Steve Pimm who was leg be­fore to Bai­ley.

Th­ese dis­missals opened the way for Si­mon North to play his first in­nings of the sea­son, and he scored 10 be­fore of­fer­ing a re­turn catch to Pussegolla.

Nine men down and 19 needed for the win. Jay Collin smacked two bound­aries, and al­most be­fore you re­alised it had come down to a last ball shootout.

But­ter­worth was on strike fac­ing Pussegolla. He went for the short­est bound­ary and dashed down the wicket. But he could not get back as the ball was whipped in to see him run out for 46.

So, no win for Nor­den who had lost their pre­vi­ous five games in all forms of the game, but it al­most seemed like a win.

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