IPPLEPEN beat arch-rivals Abbotskerswell by 36 runs to carry off the Aaron Printers Cup.
Opener Mawgan Penrice top scored with 42 in Pens’ 20-over total of 156 for seven on the South Devon Cricket Ground in Newton Abbot.
Runs proved hard to come by at first for Ipplepen as Penrice was the only one of the top six to make more than nine!
Tom Heath’s four overs only went for 16 runs and Ricardo Small-Boyce was tight early in and Adien Lighthowler economical until his last over.
At 106 for seven when Seb Powell was dismissed with five overs to go Abbots were hardly setting the world alight.
An unbroken eighth-wicket stand of exactly 50 between Callum King and Will Gornall changed the direction of the game.
Gornall made 21 not out off 18 balls as the junior partner with King, who was brought into the side at short notice due to a cry-off.
King’s 27 not out off 20 balls helped give Pens impetus when they needed some. He hit the last ball from Small Boyce for six to bring up the 156.
Small Boyce and Lighthowler both felt the sting as King and Gornall lashed out.
It was a crucial partnership in the context of the game and probably made the difference between winning and losing. That was how the man-of-the-match adjudicator saw it.
Abbots didn’t want to lose early wickets, so seeing opener and captain Charlie Mitchell bowled by Joe Abbot (4-28) in the first over was not helpful.
Surviving opener James Fulner batted through for the end to make an unbeaten 72 – and had he seen a bit more of the strike the outcome may have been different.
Fulner only faced 63 balls and while scored at a cracking pace it was a different story at the other end where Keith Wakeham and Steve Bowden were giving nothing away.
Only Small-Boyce (20) made more than six and when he was the second of Joe Abbot’s four-wicket haul, Abbots’ hopes dipped.
Gornall picked up a couple of wickets, which helped make the MoM adjudicator’s job a little less fraught.
Tim Ward, the former Devon all-rounder now chairman of Paignton, had the unenviable task of picking the man of the match from a lengthy shortlist.
Fulner, Joe Abbot, Penrice and Callum King were all on the candidates’ list but missed out.
Said Ward: “Games like this are often decided by fine margins and the stand of 50 between Callum King and Will Gornall made all the difference.
“The man of the match should go to someone from the winning side and for his runs and a couple of wickets that has to be Will Gornall.”
Gornall is the first person to win the Ted Dickinson Cup twice having collected it in 2014 when playing for Dartington & Totnes.
Winning captain Sam Wakeham said he had to agree with Ward’s summing up.
“Will Gornall and Callum King’s partnership was the game changer and tipped the game into our favour,” said Wakeham.
“The bowlers then stuck to our plans and made it very difficult for Abbots to gain any momentum and get into the game.”
Ipplepen 156-7 (M Penrice 42, C King 27no, W Gornall 21; C Smout-Cooper 2-25, A Lighthowler 2-35), Abbotskerswell 120-6 (J Fulner 72, R Small-Boyce 20; J Abbott 4-28, W Gornall 2-32). Abbotskerswell bt Ipplepen by 36 runs.