Petherick and Havard star with the bat for seconds as Glen holds his nerve at the death

Chagford II 166 for 8 Dartington & Totnes II 166 for 9

Dartington & Totnes (17 points) beat Chagford (7 points) by one wicket

Dartington & Totnes won a thrilling contest off the last ball of the match to pull off what had, for a large part of their innings, seemed to be an unlikely victory.  Tom Petherick with 56 and Gareth Havard with 41 not out were D&T’s run heroes, both playing terrific innings, but last man Pete Glen also took the plaudits.  D&T needed two runs to win with one ball remaining and Glen on strike.   All four results were possible as the canny Steve Sizmur ran in to bowl. Glen kept his nerve and flicked the ball away beautifully bisecting the square and fine leg fielders for the match winning runs, to the rapturous delight of his team mates.

At the beginning of the innings D&Ts openers had dug in against the Chagford’s father and son combination of opening bowlers, Steve and Gary Sizmur.  Gary normally plays first team cricket and his class was apparent from the onset as he bowled with pace and fluidity, obtaining plenty of movement.  Paul Taylor and Darren Colegate made a solid but understandably quiet start whilst looking to score off any opportunity.  Taylor was bowled for 10 by the younger Sizmur trying to drive.  Nikheel Jina came in and reined in his normal aggressive instincts before perishing, in similar fashion to Taylor, for 1.  Jina may only have managed a single but it ultimately proved to be an invaluable run.  Colegate looked like he might build a sizeable score but lofted the elder Sizmur to long on after making 11.

Tom Petherick soon accelerated the run rate, playing in his beautiful characteristic style, but when Mike Jarvis (6) feathered a delivery from Steve Sizmur to the wicketkeeper it looked ominous for D&T on 39 for 4.   After 23 overs D&T had reached 53 but more importantly Petherick, ably assisted by Gareth Havard, had seen off the opening bowlers without any further loss of wicket.  Petherick scored freely all around the wicket with some delightful cuts, drives and pulls.  He reached his 50 in nonchalant fashion but shortly afterwards played a widish delivery from young Penberthy onto his stumps with the score on 98.  D&T still had a lot to do and the batting was running out. Havard, oozing confidence, now took over the lead role, batting with freedom and aggression.  Andrew Bligh (6) assisted him well for a while as Havard took the Lion’s share of the strike.  With ten overs remaining fity runs were required.  Paul Raven, playing with a broken toe, chipped in with 8.  Ben Hartridge looked composed and played sensibly until he was run out for 6. Mick Rusling came in with 12 runs needed and 2.3 overs left.  With an over to go only 4 runs were needed with Rusling on strike and the wiley Steve Sizmur back into the attack.

There were further twists as Sizmur proved too good for Rusling (6), bowling him with his first delivery.  Glen, who had arrived at the crease with the body language of a man awaiting execution, missed the second delivery but managed a single off the third ball to bring Havard on strike.  Havard blocked the next ball but then drove the fifth ball firmly and it seemed to be heading to the boundary only for a fielder to get a desperate hand on it bringing only one run and Glen back on strike.  Everything rested on the final delivery.  If Glen was dismissed, Chagford  would win, a single would result in a tie and a dot ball a draw. Unruffled Glen despatched the final ball for a two and raised his bat in triumph, his beaming face a joy to behold.

Chagford had been put in to bat and, for the third week in succession, Rusling struck with his first delivery,  when Jarvis caught Gary Sizmur at silly mid-on.  Rusling (2 for 25) had no more joy until his thirteenth over when he trapped the other opener, Filor lbw for 40 with a long hop.   Glen then dismissed Oats for 5 when Jarvis took a remarkable diving catch, appearing to have a bionic arm as he slid his hand under the ball.  After some consolidation Chagford  reached 55 before Glen (2 for 39) struck again when Mount was smartly caught behind for 18.  Hartridge joined the attack and found prodigious turn.  Hartridge (2 for 31) had skipper Simon Snell and Ridgers both caught at long on by Bligh and Jarvis respectively.  Remarkably it was Jarvis’ ninth catch in two matches.  111 for 6,  Hartridge and Havard were tying the batsmen down and it seemed D&T might restrict Chagford to around 130.  However, Baker was a thorn in D&T’s side biffing any leg-sided delivery until being run out for 43, following a smart throw from Bligh.  Raven picked up a wicket but Steve Sizmur, 23 not out, took advantage of some indifferent deliveries and the last over went for 16 to enable Chagford to set a decent total.

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