Brockman Cup Final
Dartington & Totnes 135 for 8 Abbotskerswell 114 all out
D&T won by 21 runs
After beating higher league opposition in the previous two rounds D&T saved their best performance for the final beating Abbotskerswell, who were previously unbeaten this season, and play three divisions higher in the Devon Cricket League.
The final had been rained off on the previous Friday and the portents were not good as Dartington & Totnes’ players arrived at Torquay CC with rain falling from a grey sky. Skipper Mick Rusling took a gamble and agreed to start the match with light drizzle falling, much to the chagrin of his team mates. Abbots skipper Charlie Mitchell won the toss and asked D&T to bat first. It seemed a good plan when top D&T batsman Mike Jarvis was bowled for 5 in the third over. Steve Rew joined James Nicholls and the pair batted brilliantly putting on 80 runs in 10 overs for the second wicket to put D&T in a very strong position. The normally circumspect Rew was a revelation cracking the ball all over the pitch and Nicholls batted superbly as Abbots’ heads dropped. Nicholls was finally caught off Tom Andrew for 31 and Rew fell shortly afterwards for 46 to the same bowler- At 103 for 3 with the best part of 7 overs remaining D&T were looking to score well in excess of 150. It was to Abbotskerswell’s credit that they fought back strongly as D&T’s wickets tumbled and they were only able to add another 32 runs, the last two overs disappointingly yielded only 4 runs. Andrew took 3 for 30 and Adams 3 for 19 for Abbots.
Kevan Throgmorton, with Rusling, the only other survivor of the last D&T team to lift the Brockman trophy in 2009, gathered the team together in a huddle on the pitch and fired them up with a rousing call to arms. D&T, utilising Mike Jarvis’ tactical genius, opened the bowling with their by now tried and tested pair of young guns, Andrew Bligh and Alex Hartridge. The pair have been a revelation during the current Cup campaign and were soon into their stride. However, the Abbots batsmen were tough competitors and father and son opening pair, Paul and Charlie Mitchell were in impressive form with Charlie being particularly aggressive. Charlie cracked a ball from Hartridge towards Josh Thomas at long on, Thomas made a fine attempt to catch the ball, injuring a finger in the process but just failed to make the catch. Mitchell drilled the next ball from Hartridge into a similar area and Thomas made no mistake in taking an outstanding catch to dismiss the younger Mitchell for 23, made out of a total of 25. Paul Mitchell was hitting some fine shots but Hartridge (2 for 26) struck again bowling Owen for 4 with a tremendous delivery.
Dave Griffiths came into the attack and his first delivery took the key wicket of Paul Mitchell for 16 with a ball which kept low and trapped the advancing batsman lbw. Tom Andrew was striking the ball well for Abbots and kept up a flow of boundaries. Griffiths struck with the first ball of his second over when Andy Bligh took a fine catch on the long on boundary to dismiss Birt for 12. Rusling joined in the fun trapping French lbw.
Matt Haw came into the attack and bowled Adams for 8. Thomas ran out McMurray with a direct hit, much to the delight of his team mates. The game was in the balance at this stage. Abbots had 7 wickets down and needed 36 to win from 34 deliveries with Tom Andrews batting very well. Haw (3 for 18) bowled Matt Beasant for a duck and in the same over took the vital wicket of the dangerous Andrews, bowling him for 38 with a beautiful delivery as the game now swung firmly in D&T’s favour. Glenn Colegate needed only two deliveries to trap Dave Palmer lbw and wrap up the match for D&T, after another terrific team performance.
Alex Hartridge was adjudicated man of the match and deservedly lifted his trophy.