Rain forces Un­der-14s to set­tle for sec­ond

Gloucestershire Echo - - SPORT -

GLOUCES­TER­SHIRE’S Un­der 14 boys had to set­tle for the run­ners-up spot at the Taun­ton Fes­ti­val af­ter rain washed out the fi­nal day of the com­pe­ti­tion.

The team fin­ished as run­ners-up to Buck­ing­hamshire with two wins and a win­ning draw against the cham­pi­ons.

Glouces­ter­shire be­gan the fes­ti­val with a com­mand­ing 62 run vic­tory over Shrop­shire as they posted 283-8 from their 50 overs be­fore bowl­ing their op­po­nents out for 221.

The boys got their tour­na­ment off to a fly­ing start thanks to a strong open­ing part­ner­ship be­tween Tommy Boor­man (Dum­ble­ton) and Sam Brooks (Bris­tol YMCA).

The loss of Boor­man for 34 did lit­tle to check the flow of runs as skip­per Ben French (45) (Fro­ces­ter) looked in con­fi­dent mood from the off.

Brooks looked set for triple fig­ures be­fore fall­ing for 72.

A mid­dle or­der col­lapse threat­ened to de­rail the in­nings but Glouces­ter­shire got back on track thanks to Char­lie Brook (46) (Cirences­ter) and Toby Rice (28) (Lod­way) to post an im­pres­sive 283.

In re­ply, two early wick­ets for pace bowler Ethan Cor­bett (Dum­ble­ton) were com­pli­mented by an ex­cel­lent spell of 3-27 from Win­ter­bourne spin­ner Jack Stud­ley.

Shrop­shire nearly took the game away from Glouces­ter­shire thanks to some mid­dle or­der counter-at­tack­ing – in­clud­ing 82 from Tom Grif­fin.

Left arm seamer Ahmed Tabraiz (Pak Bris­to­lians), re­turned to wres­tle back con­trol of the game.

He took 2-29 in­clud­ing Grif­fin and Cor­bett (4-39) also took two wick­ets in his sec­ond spell.

On day two Glouces­ter­shire cruised to a 145 run vic­tory over Ox­ford­shire.

Glouces­ter­shire be­gan pos­i­tively through Boor­man (50) and Brooks (29) but an­other mid­dle or­der col­lapse put them in trou­ble be­fore an in­nings of de­ter­mi­na­tion and class from Ahmed Syed (79) (Thorn­bury).

He re­ceived good sup­port from Rice (18*) as Glouces­ter­shire posted 261-9.

Open­ing bowlers Brook (2-20) and Tabraiz (2-19) took early wick­ets, fol­lowed up by a su­perb spell of 3-17 by Stud­ley as Oxon were bowled out for 116.

Day three brought a hard fought en­counter against Devon and Glouces­ter­shire were in­debted to a mas­ter­ful 96 not out from Ol­lie Mcconkey (Reading) as he al­most sin­gle-hand­edly helped post a com­pet­i­tive to­tal of 187.

Syed got Glouces­ter­shire off to the per­fect start with an early break­through but Devon fought back with a sec­ond wicket part­ner­ship of 80.

Stud­ley turned the game on its head with an in­spired spell of 3-12 and along­side fel­low off­spin­ner Tay­lor Ire­land (Fro­ces­ter), Glouces­ter­shire put pres­sure on Devon who slipped from 119-2 to 144-6 with a cou­ple of run outs.

But be­cause Glouces­ter­shire had been bowled out in the 48th over Devon had 52 overs to reach their tar­get – get­ting over the line on the fi­nal ball to win by two wick­ets.

Glouces­ter­shire picked them­selves up with an ex­cel­lent per­for­mance against Buck­ing­hamshire.

They lost an early wicket but re­cov­ered through Boor­man (32) and Syed.

When Boor­man and Mcconkey de­parted, the mid­dle or­der prob­lems re­turned.

How­ever Syed found a part­ner in Brook as he went on to score a stylish 97 while Brook added a county best 66* as Glouces­ter­shire posted 279.

Glouces­ter­shire kept their op­po­nents be­hind the run rate. and as Bucks tried to ac­cel­er­ate Glouces­ter­shire be­gan to make break­throughs.

But, rec­og­niz­ing that a los­ing draw would give them top spot in the ta­ble, Bucks did not chase the win.

De­spite suc­cess for Cor­bett (3-32) and Tabraiz (2-41) Glouces­ter­shire had to set­tle for a win­ning draw as Bucks fin­ished on 231-7.

Char­lie Brook played some im­por­tant in­nings at the Taun­ton Fes­ti­val

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