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York Cricket Club win Kingfisher Beer Cup at Derbyshire
TOM PRINGLE needed a cortisone injection in a damaged shoulder just to play in the final of the Kingfisher Beer Cup, but the spinner produced a spectacular display to help York win the national knockout title for the first time in 37 years.
A man-of-the-match performance, with 4-22 from his nine overs and a brilliant catch, allowed the Clifton Parkers to restrict London-based Wanstead & Snaresbrook to only 162 from their 45 overs at Derbyshire’s County Ground.
York rattled off that total with 91 balls to spare as openers Duncan Snell and Liam McKendry secured a solid foundation before big-hitting Oli Hairs smacked an unbeaten 68 off 45 balls to see the Solly Sports Yorkshire ECB County Premier League champions home.
But it was Pringle who was the star of the show, defying the pain from tendonitis and a torn rotator cuff, to take the game away from Wanstead at a crucial stage of their innings and give captain Dan Woods and his men a platform for an eight-wicket victory.
With forecasts of heavy rain, and perhaps fearing a Duckworth-Lewis encounter, Wanstead, known as the Herons, won the toss and elected to bat despite the cloudy conditions.
They were soon in trouble, skipper Arfan Akram’s attempted pull in the sixth over only resulting in a big top edge that fell invitingly into the hands of opening bowler Glen Richmond.
He was followed in the very next over by Rehan Hassan (0), trapped lbw by Snell and York were off to a brilliant start at 18-2.
But England Under-19 player Kishen Velani was up next and showed why he is highly touted and has turned out for Essex seconds.
The 18-year-old put together an excellent 50, off 65 balls, with five fours and a six as Wanstead looked like they might recover from their early setbacks.
His innings could have ended on only 17, Alex Collins dropping a sharp chance as Velani began to showcase his big hitting skills.
Wanstead opener John Chambers departed back to the pavilion – Dan Woods snaring him for 21 off his own bowling – but Velani then smacked him for four and six in consecutive overs and Pringle initially got similar treatment as Wanstead moved to 91-3.
He got the breakthrough, getting Adnan Akram caught behind by Steve Crossley for only one in the 25th over and, crucially, Velani followed four overs later.
Immediately after notching his 50, he went for a big shot through extra cover and only found the hands of Hairs. Pringle had his man.
He wasn’t finished.
In the 33rd over, Jonathan Das was caught at mid-off for ten and, the very next ball, Petrus Hattingh, who had swiped a couple of fierce boundaries, edged behind to Crossley for 12.
David Richardson stoutly defended the hat-trick ball but Pringle had done the damage and, when he produced a spectacular airborne catch to remove Richardson for ten from Woods’ bowling – shortly after Hairs bowled former Pakistan international Shahid Saeed for just three, it looked like Wanstead would not even complete their 45 overs.
As it was, a 21-run partnership between Zain Shahzad (10) and Joe Ellis-Grewal (12), got the London side home but their total of 162 looked vastly under par.
Early wickets were vital for Wanstead but they did not arrive as openers McKendry and Snell got off to the perfect start.
Snell was timing the ball exquisitely – hitting two boundaries straight down the ground and another two around the field as the Clifton Parkers reached 40-0 after ten overs.
McKendry got a touch of luck when edging behind for a boundary, but there was nothing fortunate about a classy cover drive that helped to bring up the half-century partnership off 66 balls.
Snell was eventually removed for 30 in the 16th over after skying a Velani delivery to Hattingh, a wicket that was cheered among the Londoners as if they had won the game.
Normal service was resumed immediately, however, as Hairs hit a boundary from his first ball and, soon after, dispatched a huge pull for another.
Renowned for his big hitting, the Scot looked like he was trying to finish the game himself – striking two clubbing boundaries.
McKendry was just as expansive, smashing two fours over the top down the ground, and Hairs brought the 100 up with another trademark swish of the bat.
Yet another big four signalled the 50 partnership, in only 28 minutes off 55 balls, but McKendry fell three short of his half-century – bowled behind his legs by Ellis-Grewal when trying to sweep.
It only delayed the inevitable.
Hairs cut loose even further. He brought up his 50 off 40 balls, shortly after hitting a massive six, and then struck four consecutive boundaries to take his side to the brink. He couldn’t finish with a four but his score of 68 not out, off 45 balls with ten fours and a six, had seen York home with fully 15 overs still to spare.