The collaboration this season between Sway CC & Lymington CC to field u17 & u19 teams in county competitions has proved highly successful as in a nerve-jangling finals day of high quality T20 cricket at Basingstoke the SwayLymo u17 team eventually lifted the prestigious Kerry Cup.
Semi-final - SwayLymo 120-4 beat Fair Oak 117-8 by 6 wickets
In the morning semi-final Fair Oak won the toss and batted. They started strongly and had put on 40 runs before Chahal (16) fell to Tom Sykes (4-0-27-1) in the 7th over. Then McKenzie (40) and Watson (29) took the score smoothly onto 70 in the 10th over and a daunting run chase looked on the cards. The SwayLymo spinners regained some control of the game as firstly Jude Tollerfield (4-0-23-1) broke the partnership and then Dan Bailey (4-0-22-2) and Josh Bailey (4-0-21-0) kept the runs down and took wickets to allow pacers Sykes and Josh Royan (4-0-23-1) to bowl some tight death overs, which together with some excellent fielding and three run outs restricted Fair Oak to 117-8.
The SwayLymo response faltered at the start as the usually reliable Royan and D.Bailey both fell to sharp catches leaving them 12-2 after 4 overs. Sykes and J.Bailey needed to rebuild against some tight bowling and batted sensibly before displaying their power and both regularly finding and clearing the boundary to put on an invaluable 81 runs in just 10 overs. J.Bailey fell one short of a well-deserved 50 in the 14th over and Sykes then pushed on to 47 runs before he was bowled going for the winning runs. Liam McCurdy and Tom Burton saw SwayLymo safely into the final in the 17th over.
Final - SwayLymo 144-6 beat Parley 142-5 by 4 wickets
SwayLymo won the toss and invited Parley to bat. The Parley openers Neill (33) and Saunders (39) both started powerfully, putting on 59 for the 1st wicket before Josh Bailey (4-0-24-2) came onto bowl in the 8th over and produced a game-changing spell as he bowled Neill in his 1st over and had Saunders brilliantly caught by Tom Burton on the boundary in his next over. Jude Tollerfield (4-0-27-1) kept the other end reasonably tight and the Parley run-rate was temporarily checked although Bragginton (42 no) soon began to find his range. Tom Sykes (4-0-22-2) and Dan Bailey (4-0-23-0) both continued to maintain some control with Parley finishing their 20 overs on 142, which was agreed to be a decent par score.
The SwayLymo opening pair of Royan (35) and D.Bailey (16) redeemed themselves with a fine opening partnership of 42 in 5 overs before Bailey was caught behind off the pacy Saunders. Sykes (24) came in and batted well again and with Royan took the score to 79 in the 11th over when Royan was out. Sykes was joined again by J.Bailey and they faced some tight bowling from Blackford, Bragginton and Sinha as the asking rate climbed to nearly 9 an over when Sykes was out to an amazing reaction catch off his own bowling by Sinha and then Liam McCurdy fell to a superb catch on the boundary by Saunders. Skipper Tom Burton joined Bailey at the crease with 43 required off 5 overs. Bailey then launched an aerial assault wreaking damage on parked cars as he cleared the boundary twice but was eventually caught off another towering shot. Burton (17 no) was joined by Ben Paxton (7) and they pushed the score on to 138 in the penultimate over when Paxton was run out and Jude Tollerfield came to the crease. With 5 runs required off the final over a dot ball, a leg bye and a scampered single by Tollerfield kept crowd nerves jangling and brought the equation to 3 required off 3 balls. Skipper Burton was the supercool batter as he gloriously launched the 4th ball back over the bowler's head for four to spark scenes of jubilation by the SwayLymo players and supporters, and warm appreciation for a great game of cricket from the large crowd.
At the trophy presentation the umpires nominated Josh Bailey for the Man of the Match award.
The SwayLymo partnership have another chance of silverware as the u19s have also reached the Finals Day of the Hampshire u19T20 competition to be held at Basingstoke on Monday 26th August.
Sway Lymo u17 Kerry Cup winners. Back row: Jude Tollerfield, Ollie Smith, Dan Bailey, Josh Bailey, Josh Royan, Danny Paxton. Front row: Arthur Lomax, Ben Paxton, Tom Burton, Liam McCurdy, Tom Sykes