Youngest century record broken again!

Tony Woodhouse Trophy

Hythe & Dibden 266-8 Sway 263-4

If ever there was a a game that fully justified Tony Woodhouse's foresight and good judgement in establishing this tournament, then this was it.

Only a glorious day Sway travelled to Hythe with a team packed full of young guns who have been putting the opposition to the sword on colts cricket and up against them was a fine crop of Hythe's new youngsters backed up by presence of Matt Howe, Jonjo Stovell and Sean "the Guru" Tongs.

Sway batted first and opened with skipper Chris Straw and U13 star Daniel Bailey. Straw was bowled for just 2 runs by the impressive Tom Jones, which brought the much-improved Vito Falso to the crease to join Bailey. The pair played very well with just a few half chances interspersed  with some big hits and rapidly took the score onto 75 off just 11 overs before Falso was bowled by the promising Monty Gilbert for 39. Nick Brien joined the fray and continued where he left off last year on his favourite ground. Bailey and Brien put on a whopping 127 for the 3rd wicket before Brien was bowled by Stovell just shy of the half century mark. Sara Allport was in at number 4 and produced one of the highlights of the game - casually walloping a full toss from Jones into the bushes. Jones, however, got his girl when Allport tried to pull a short ball and top edged a simple catch to the keeper. Daniel Bailey had been progressing along nicely by this point, passing his fifty with easy but for no particular reason had been getting less of the strike by the time his brother Joshua came in to join him with the score on 208 and about 6 overs until tea.

For a while there were some concerns that there might not be enough time to see up the Bailey ton, but to be honest it was never really in doubt and in the penultimate over a single saw Daniel Bailey become Sway's youngest ever centurion at just 13 years and 3 months. Brother Joshua, not to be outdone produced a quick fire  unbeaten 26 and with Daniel finishing on 106 not out, Sway had run up a seemingly challenging total of 263 of 39 overs.

Daniel Bailey, record-breaking 106 not out

Hythe opened with Dan Duell to partner the experience of Tongs, however Duell did not last long and was caught in the deep by Michael Allport for just four.  Tongs meanwhile, who has not been in the greatest of form by his own standards, gave a couple of chances that predictably Sway would later come to rue. Dan Taylor and Tongs milked the Sway bowlers for 137 runs before Taylor was eventually bowled by Joshua Bailey for 69. Sway's bowlers continued to struggle for consistency, even the experienced Dave Marshal was out-of-sorts, unable to cope with an unfortunately placed hole in the ground in his run up!

The game looked to be slipping away from the visitors but when Daniel Bailey picked up a couple of wickets, both caught confidently by Thomas Burton, all three results looked equally possible. There followed a dramatic twist in the game when Sara Allport first bowled Fraser Smith, then in a moment of high drama, had Hythe's run-scoring machine Tongs, stumped for 94  - a wicket that will live long in the memory of both clubs.

Sara Allport - a wicket to remember!

Sway tails were now up and victory seemed within reach. Hythe's 9th wicket pairing of Howe and Stovell, however, had no interest in trying to eek out a draw and they were going all out forthe win, with 49 needed at an asking rate of around 7 or 8 per over. The pair played very well  - Howe working the ball, and Stovell smacking four boundaries as the home side recorded a glorious victory with an over and a half to spare.

A superb game of cricket  - the return leg in July will be eagerly anticipated and may well prove to a trophy decider.