REPORT: Cheshire Women’s League Finals Day 2022

Martin Saxon reports

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Senior Knockout Cup

Stockport Trinity Fire 95-6 (20; Carys White 25, Ellie Mason 21)

Nantwich Vipers 97-1 (17.5; Seren Smale 40ret, Grace Michell 20)

Nantwich secured their biggest prize to date in their short history with a commanding victory here. With Bethan Robinson – four overs for seven runs – and Beth Hughes – 11 from three overs – leading the way, the Vipers attack ensured Trinity never really built up any momentum.

Seren Smale’s 40 from 32 balls well and truly broke the back of this run chase, indeed 12 was scored from the opening over, 20 from the first two and 70 from the first ten. Although the scoring slowed down after that, with some tight overs from Lauren O’Reilly, the result was never in serious doubt.

Scorecard

Development Knockout Cup

Hayfield 83-3 (20; Ruth Lomas 25ret)

Greenfield 87-6 (19.5; Abigail Barlow 28*, Zoe Cuthill 22, Bethany Garforth 20, Rosie Bradshaw 2-13)

For the first time, the Development Knockout – the competition for division three and four clubs – occupied the prime middle slot on Finals Day and those watching were rewarded with the closest finish of the day. Hayfield might have won both of the crucial clashes between these teams in Division Three East this year, but Greenfield had the last laugh here, ensuring they have a trophy to mark their first year in the Cheshire League.

Both teams started their innings slowly and there were impressively economical figures for Gracie Wray, Hannah Stewart and Lily Bailey in the first innings and Molly Doody in the second. However, both sides also rallied strongly in the closing overs, and ultimately it would be Greenfield who prevailed, overcoming the loss of two wickets in Rosie Bradshaw’s opening over. Abigail Barlow’s 28 from 22 balls supplied the finishing touch, ensuring the trophy is bound for Tameside.

Scorecard

T20 Divisional Competition

Stockport Trinity Fire 122-7 (20; Ellie Mason 43ret, Lauren O’Reilly 20, Emily Page 2-7, Maddie Lawson 2-12, Abbey Gore 2-24)

Appleton Tigers 126-5 (17.4; Georgia Heath 39ret, Emma Barlow 33, Amy Seddon 23*, Emma Royle 2-11, Kate Harvey 2-16)

Appleton completed the highest successful run chase to date in a CWCL cup final to win this competition for the first time since 2018. It all meant that Stockport Trinity were unable to repeat their T20 double of 2019 and ultimately went home empty-handed.

However, this is one match that the Stockport side appeared to be bossing during the early stages. Ellie Mason had not quite been at her fluent best in the first final of the day, but here her unbeaten 43 set her side on the way to a good total. The total looked even better when Emma Royle struck two early blows in reply, and with Lauren O’Reilly contributing some tight overs at the other end, the Tigers were reduced to 15-2 from six overs. 

However, the next four overs would see the game turned on its head, as some big hitting from Georgia Heath led the way in adding 47 in four overs, firstly cashing in from the final overs bowled by the new ball pair, then dominating the opening overs from the change bowlers. 

Heath ultimately retired with 39 from 26 balls with five fours and two sixes. Trinity also dismissed Emma Barlow short of the retirement score, so had this wicket opened the door for Trinity? The answer proved to be an emphatic No, as Amy Seddon scored nine runs from the remaining balls in that over.

Although further wickets fell, Trinity could not halt Appleton’s momentum, and having been second favourites earlier, the Warrington club ran out winners with all of 16 balls in hand.

Scorecard