Stour's promotion hopes hit by bad weather

Matt Bradley batting against Penkridge.

Matt Bradley batting against Penkridge.

First published in Sport by

STOURBRIDGE'S efforts to claim second spot in Division Two of the Birmingham and District League were hit by bad weather at the weekend.

Saturday’s clash between promotion contenders Stourbridge and Penkridge was abandoned after the third shower at the Memorial Ground.

That opened the door for Attock to move into the promotion spot after defeating Old Elizabethans.

Then, the club's Bank Holiday Monday fixture against Attock was also abandoned without a ball being bowled.

Attock were the overall beneficiaries of the calamitous weather, securing 226 points. Penkridge are third on 221 and Stour slip to fourth on 216 points.

In the Stourbridge versus Penkridge fixture, the home side faced the worst of the conditions when asked to bat first.

Penkridge bowlers captured the wickets of Alex Bingham (5), Steve Game (3), Richard Bradley (0) and Audy Alexander (14) with the total on 55 in the space of nine overs.

Pace man Laeq Chisti bagged three of the wickets with the ball swinging profusely.

Matt Bradley and Jitesh Jivan-Patel both handled the intense pressure and put on 95 valuable runs to repair the damage.

Patel was stumped off Shafiqu Ahmed when on 33. His wicket, which fell on 150, triggered a procession of wickets as Stour were all out for 167 with 13 overs still remaining of their innings.

The recalculated target due to rain interruptions for Penkridge was agreed to be 122 off 27 overs. However, a third shower as the first over was being bowled ended the contest.

Meanwhile, in the T20 County Cup finals, Stourbridge missed out on glory when losing to Bromsgrove last Sunday.

They beat Astwood Bank and Worcester to reach the finals and were drawn against Bromsgrove. The other semi finalists were Ombersley drawn against Barnards Green. Both matches were played on the King’s Ground adjacent to the New Road County Ground.

Bromsgrove skipper Jayedon Levitt won the toss and decided to bat first. Stour were the outsiders facing strong Birmingham League Division One team and had to be content with 20 runs off the first over from Ikram Mudssaq.

Stour’s revenge came in the second over from Jitesh Jivan-Patel. He had Levitt smartly caught in the covers for 18.

Stour then had the opposition reeling on 56 for 4 off seven overs.

Pushing for runs led to the run out of opener Ashley Newdick, Bilal Hassan doing the business for Stour with a direct hit with score on 85 and eight overs remaining.

The 20th over cost Stour 14 runs as Bromsgrove reached 161 for 8.

After the early wicket of opener Alex Bingham, bowled by William Tuffin for six with the score on 14 , Stour’s reply was fronted by Steve Game and Audy Alexander.

They took the score to 41 when Game was given out lbw to Paul Husbands for 20. A big turning point came when Alexander was bowled by Tuffin for 22. Stour were faltering at 53 for 3 off nine overs.

Fight back came from Matt Bradley and Jitesh Jivan-Patel. They took the score to 107 after fearless hitting from both. Patel was first to go bowled by Newdick for 29.

Patel's wicket opened up the flood gates. Billal Hassan was caught in the deep for four and Bradley went the same way off the same bowler for 49.

The opposition target proved to be beyond Stour as they ended the 20 overs all out 152. The final, played at New Road, was won by Ombersley.

Stourbridge will return to league action when they face Eastnor away on Saturday.

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