Abbots aim to keep firm grip on Brockman Cup

HOLDERS Abbotskerswell square up to Stokeinteighnead at Torquay Recreation Ground on Friday night (6pm) in the final of the Brockman Cup.

Abbots ended a 30-year wait to lift the historic trophy last season when they defeated Paignton by 44 runs.

Stokeinteignhead have never appeared in a final before, but do know something about the opposition.

“We know some of the Abbots guys quite well and they knocked us out last season in a close game that we should've won” said skipper Mark Russell. “It would be nice to do something about that.

“Abbots have some good young players; hopefully our extra years will help us through.”

Abbots may have a youthful side, but skipper Charlie Mitchell doesn’t see that as a huge issue.

“We are a really young side, especially the bowling attack, with my top five bowlers having an average age of 15.

“We're a good side and we're capable of winning the cup two years in a row.

“Although lacking experience having only two players over the age of 20 but we showed against Ipplepen that were capable of overcoming that and winning games.”

Abbotskerswell’s last hurdle between them and the final was an appointment with near neighbours Ipplepen, who they beat by eight wickets.

Seb Powell fired 40 and Tom Crocker 21 not out in Pens’ total of 133 for seven/

Charlie Smout-Cooper took two for 21 for Abbots.

Lewis Borlace then picked up a brace of Mitchells – dad Paul (12) and lad Charlie (14) – as Abbots reached 36 for tw0.

An unbroken stand of exactly 100 between Aiden Lightowlers (57no) and Ricky Small-Boyce (39) swept Abbots to victory with 11 balls to spare.

Stokeinteignhead made it to the final with a last-four win over South Devon.

South Devon felt they had done well to reach 105 for seven on a sporting Torquay pitch – Mark Andrews making 68 at the top of the order.

Skipper Mark Russell with four for 12 was the leading Stoke bowler, although Chris Prestt (0-18) kept it tight.

The Villagers found runs hard to come by at first as ShaunTaylor (2-16) and Aaron Hammett (0-18) bowled eight cheap overs.

The back-up bowling wasn’t a success though and a stand of 89 between Dan Britcliffe (55no) and Mike Lang (33no) got Stoke over the line with two overs to spare.

Abbotskerswell: Charlie Mitchell, Paul Mitchell, Ricardo Small-Boyce, Aiden Lightowlers, James McMurray, Karl Beasant, Charlie Smout-Cooper, Josh Reilly, Elliot Adams, Eddie Smout-Cooper.

Stokeinteignhead: Chris Prestt, Paul Russell, Dan Britcliffe, Mike Lang, Andrew Thornton-Clarke, Chris Parish, Mark Russell, Roger Putman, Chris Saunders, Tom Wills, Jamie Clinkett, Siju Chacko.

Umpires: Dick Hookway & Chris Shelton.