Corsham U11 Falcons edged a dramatic contest with Bradford-on-Avon to progress in the Bath & District U11 cup.
Powerful leg-side hitting from William Peach got Corsham off to a solid start batting first in the eight-a-side pairs competition. Wicketkeeper-batsman Ollie Dickinson excelled later in the innings with a number of crunching boundaries as he and partner Alfie Johnson put on 48-2 in their four overs in the middle. Last-minute stand-in Elspeth Starks helped Corsham reach a challenging total as she kept her wicket intact and rotated the strike so captain Harry Brain could hit some of his trademark elegant drives. Falcons eventually finished on 126-6 from their 16 overs (adjusted to 296 under the competition's pairs rules).
Bradford-on-Avon began their reply in fine style and, at the halfway point, were ahead of the required rate. Tight bowling, smart ground-fielding and a spectacular catch from Ollie behind the stumps pegged their opponents back and Falcons were back in the driving seat going into the final four overs.
That was when Bradford's county-U11 allrounder came to the crease and changed the game again. He hit a series of boundaries including a colossal six to put his side back in front. However, a late wicket from Alfie Johnson helped keep Falcons in the contest and, going into the final over, the match was finely poised with Bradford needing 10 to win.
Left-arm quick William Goymer faced the daunting task of bowling to Bradford's star batsman. Under pressure, he managed to keep a tight line and Bradford were left needing four off the final ball. Again, Will delivered a good ball that was squeezed only as far as mid-on. With the batsmen running regardless, Mikey Starks kept his head to execute a cool run-out. Bradford ended on 108-4 (adjusted to 288).
Falcons now look forward to a meeting with Chippenham I in the next round of the competition.
Updated 09:47 - 25 Jun 2017 by John Gale