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Regional Success for Somerset Disabled CC

Report by Nick Dean

Huntley Cricket Club in the Gloucestershire country side hosted the S9 South West Group Regional Final on Sunday 29th August 2021 between Somerset DCC and Isle of White DCC.

Somerset won the toss and elected to field first on a batsman friendly ground and pitch, and despite a fantastic effort in the field and a high class bowling spell from Meghan Hughes, claiming 2 wickets, they were set a daunting 180 to win from their 30 overs.

The chase began well, with multiple boundaries coming from the first 3 overs. However, IOW stalled Somerset momentum with the wicket of opener James Mayled in the 4th overs after a very positive start. Somerset found themselves 22-1.

Captain Nick Dean and no. 3 Jack Milton went about rebuilding the innings and progressed at a good rate. The recovery was well paced with both batsman happy to take quick singles on offer, whilst capitalising on a good pitch by finding the boundary when the opportunity was presented.

The 50 partnership was brought up and at drinks Somerset had moved on were well placed at 81-1, albeit behind the required run rate.

Shortly after passing the hundred mark for the loss of just 1, and thanks in no small part to the assistance of his runner and opening partner James Mayled, Nick Dean passed his 50 and retired as per S9 rules, a timely return to some form for the captain struggling for runs this season. He was replaced at the crease by wicket keeper batsman Russ Young.

Unfortunately Russ was sent back early in his innings, a good ball clipping the top of the off bail and IOW began to wrestle back the initiative.

John Tucker now came to the crease. 25 years at the club and former championship winning captain, his experience was going to be crucial if Somerset were going to meet the 7 runs an over require.

His skill and experience was on show from ball one. Defending where needed, but also bringing the large Somerset contingent to their feet with a straight 6 back over the opening bowlers head to send the momentum back the way of Somerset.

Jack Milton had timed his innings brilliantly and, with the score at 160-2, also retired for his 50. James Redwood then joined John Tucker out in the middle, with 20 to win from 5 overs.

With no sign of nerves whatsoever, Tucker sent another 6 back over the bowlers head to put Somerset firmly in the ascendancy. Pressure was clearly being felt by the IOW bowlers with another boundary and extras, Somerset were within 6 runs of their first championship since 2010, with 3 overs remaining.

With 6 to win, Tucker and Redwood did exactly what was required with sensible shots taking Somerset past their target with 2.4 overs remaining, and in doing so, delivered the club’s 4 championship.

The friends, family and support network that make up the fabric of the club all celebrated together, as the team came together to produce a win that seemed impossible at the half way stage. A fantastic moment for everyone involved in the club and one that will live long in the memory of everyone associated.

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