Wales Over 50s win the Southern Counties Seniors Championship

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                                                             The Successful Wales XI

Back Row L-R: John Shultler (Hampshire Umpire); Phil Godwin (Baglan CC); Steve Jones (Burton CC); Paul Webb (Whitland CC); John Lewis (Creosyceiliog CC); Paul Bennett (Chepstow CC); Neal Williams (Cresselly CC); Duncan Williams - W50 Umpire (Ynystawe); Steve Richmond (Porthcawl CC); Martin Lewis Baglan CC).Front Row L-R:Keith Davies (Cimla CC); Janice Webb - Whitland & Pembrokeshire; Danny Griffiths (Creosyceiliog CC) Capt; Elwyn Pugh (Tata Steel CC)

Wales defeated Hampshire in Southern Counties Final at Trowbridge CC on September 11th. Wales qualified for a place in he Semi-finals by leading their zone, winning 7 out of their 8 matches.  Wales defeated Bedfordshire in the semi-finals to reach the final.

The final was effectively decided by a tremendous batting performance by the Wales, scoring 270-6 in the allotted 45 overs.  The main contributor to this total was Man-0f-the-Match Paul Bennett of Chepstow CC who scored 118 and shared a crucial partnership of 128 with Elwyn Pugh (51 runs) of Tata Steel CC.

Having been invited to bat, Wales had started slowly and lost John Lewis (Croesyceiliog CC) in the 6th over  At this point, Paul Bennett joined Neil Williams (Cresselly CC) and this pair struck the ball to all parts before Williams was dismissed for 51  - 101-2 in 19 overs.  Paul Bennett and Elwyn Pugh continued the brisk pace, taking Wales to 227 for 3 in 39 overs. At this point, Hampshire introduced Andy Donaghue to the attack and he removed both batsman in successive overs with Paul Bennett hitting a match winning 118 and Pugh bowled for 51.    Wales middle and late order contributed quick runs in the last 5 overs taking Wales to 270 for 6 in 45 overs.

                              

                                                                Man-of-the-Match Paul Bennett

The Hampshire response got off to the worst possible start losing Britton in the first over off the bowling of Martin Lewis (Baglan CC) (7-0-26-2) and Buckingham run out leaving Hampshire on 22 for 2 off 11 overs. Sean Tongs battled against tight Wales bowling from Steve Jones (Burton CC) (9-0-26-0), was then joined by Andy Jones and both attempted to increase the run rate which was increasing at an alarming rate. When Andy Jones was out for 15, this left Hampshire on 35 for 3 off 16 overs. Sean Tongs was then joined by Andy Donaghue and the pair got Hampshire to drinks on 58 for 3 in 22 overs.

Hampshire, now needing 213 off 23 overs, resumed after drinks with Tongs out for 25. Andy Donaghue, looking to score quickly, was well caught in the deep by captain Danny Griffiths (Croesyceiliog CC) for 31, the bowler Elwyn Pugh (8-0-45-3).  The middle order perished quickly in the quest for runs, before Chris Lye, batting at nine struck 64 in quick time before being caught by Phil Godwin (Baglan CC) from the bowling of Paul Webb (Whitland CC) (8.4-0-33-2).  Lye was well supported by Mark Hannah who scored 18 who was run out with a direct hit from Phil Godwin (9-1-38-1) from the deep.  

Hampshire finished on 201 all out in the 45th over giving Wales a well-deserved deserved victory. 

Skipper Danny Griffiths would like to give thanks all clubs for the use of their facilities during the season: Croesyceiliog CC; Carmarthen Wanderers CC; Tata Steel CC and Ynystawe CC.
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