The Under 17 girls squad won the south west performance group by winning five out of their eight games with one being cancelled due to the weather.
The penultimate group game of the season was against Cornwall and it was a top of the table clash with the winner guaranteed a place in the national finals.
There had been significant rain fall during the night and a delayed start was inevitable. After three hours of waiting it was decided to move the game to the second team pitch which had dried out considerably. The game was reduced to 25 overs per side. Wales won the toss and elected to bowl on what was going to be a difficult wicket to bat on.
Wales managed to restrict Cornwall to 89 for 7 off their 25 overs with captain Charlotte Scarborough the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 8 off her overs. Bethan Hughes, Seren Hughes, Kelsey Hughes and Shannon Maguire picking up a wicket each.
In reply Wales got off to a shaky start losing opener Rachel Davies to a mix up between the wickets. Alex Griffiths was the stand out batter of the Wales innings with 37 off 51 balls. The score was 76 for 6 when Alex was eventually dismissed on the boundary by an outstanding diving catch. Bethan Hughes 11* and Kelsey Powell 3* accumulated the 14 runs running well to ensure Wales got over the line with 10 balls to spare.
A huge achievement and proud moment for the players, parents, grandparents and coaches who were there supporting the players.
The national finals were held at Bishop Stortford CC on the last Wednesday and Thursday in August. Wales drew Yorkshire in the Semi- Final.
The semi-final was due to be played on Wednesday but the inclement weather meant the semi-final was cancelled. It was decided to play the semi-final and final on Thursday. Games would be reduced to 25 overs per side.
Wales won the toss and elected to bowl. Yorkshire were very positive and posted a challenging 148 for 2 off their 25 overs. Wales were dismissed for 61 and did not for fill their potential. Yorkshire were an excellent all-round team and eventually defeated Sussex in the final to become national champions.
Wales faced Staffordshire in the 3rd v 4th Play off. Wales won the toss and elected to bat. The welsh batting did not improve and were dismissed for 66. Staffordshire passed the welsh total in the 15th over 3 wickets down.
The performances in the final did not show the level of ability this squad possesses. However, reaching the national finals is a huge achievement and one the players should be very proud of. They are the 4th best team in the country which is still an excellent achievement. The majority of the squad will remain in 2018 where they will look to qualify for the finals again and put in a better performance.