Life’s a Beech

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ON the hottest day in Jersey’s history, many Islanders flocked to the golden sands to make the most of the heatwave.

However for the appropriately named Beeches, there was work to be done at Grainville as they won the JEP Knockout Cup.

Fellow finalists St Helier RFC were not to be taken lightly, having beaten contenders Old Victorians en route.

If it was not hot enough already, Beeches spin bowler Tom Shenton certainly brought the heat out to the middle.

He removed both openers within his first two overs, as he trapped St Helier captain Jack Maton LBW for a duck.

He then teamed up with wicketkeeper Dave Buxton for a stumping to remove a charging Lachlan Fulton.

Shenton was not done there though, as he continued to skittle through the powerful St Helier top order

Ollie Nightingale was next and then Dylan Kotedia was ran-out the very next ball.

Shenton grabbed his fourth, removing Adam Hayward for a duck, to leave their opponents toiling.

However St Helier steadied the ship with solid contributions from Viraj Kotedia (19) and the pick of the innings from George Richardson (32).

Ian Crocker also added 16 for a battling St Helier, who set Beeches 120 to chase off their 15 overs.

As the temperatures began to give the players some respite, Harry Jenkins (27) and Joel Dudley (54 not out) were keen to do much of the heavy lifting for the Lasallians and with a modest required rate, they could play at their own pace.

Both batsman showed patience and maturity to pick their moments for boundaries, as their side continued to eat into the deficit.

There was a brief bit of hope for Maton’s men, when Hayward’s superb catch removed Jenkins, off a Nightingale delivery, but Beeches regrouped with James Smith (28), who steered his side across the line with Dudley’s half-century, with 24 balls spare.

winning captain James Perchard said: ‘St Helier are a very strong side and have proven that throughout the tournament.

‘I feel like we won the game in the first few overs during the powerplay – Tom Shenton was outstanding.

‘Taking four wickets for only 16 runs and taking out a lot of their heavy hitters was huge for us.

‘We felt like they were probably 20 or 30 short of a par total and our batsman were able to head out there and play at their pace.

‘Once they got their eye in, they were able to score at will.’

Scorecards in today’s JEP (pg 66).

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