Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Big weekend in County's Division Two

Its not just Division 1 which has double headers this weekend (http://womens-cricket.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/county-championship-double-header.html), Division 2 has a full programme of games on both Sunday and Monday too. The fixtures are:-

Sunday 5th May (11am start)
Somerset v Cheshire at Cleeve CC
Devon v Ireland at Torquay CC
Wales v Staffordshire at Newport CC
Worcestershire v Durham at Barnards Green CC

Monday 6th May (11am start)
Cheshire v Lancashire at Barnton
Worcestershire v Devon at Oldwinsford CC
Somerset v Durham at The County Ground, Taunton
Wales v Ireland at Ynystawe CC

Staffordshire and Somerset are the only teams with wins under their belts after a rain-affected first round of matches. They beat Cheshire and Worcestershire respectively. Somerset will hope to add another couple of wins from the weekend and claim top spot on Tuesday morning. It is great to see them rewarding Durham for the long trip down with a game at the magnificent County Ground in Taunton.

Ireland will hope to pick up some points from their games against Devon and Wales, but they are going to be tough games to win. Cheshire's second day game is a local derby with illustrious neighbours Lancashire (their only game of the weekend). They will have their work cut-out and may be a bit light in the batting department.

Wales v Staffs on Day One should be a good game for the neutral - Staffs' West Indian Shanel Daley may appreciate a bit more warmth in the air and fewer jumpers than have been required of late. Worcestershire will hope to notch a couple of ticks in the win column from their two games at home with Durham and Devon. Devon may have other ideas and this looks like being the pick of the Day 2 games.


County Championship Double Header

It is a massive weekend for the Women's County Championship with a full fixture list in all divisions on both Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday. Here are the Division 1 fixtures (I will look at Div 2 in a separate blog):-

Sunday 5th May (11am start)
Essex v Notts at Garon Park, South End
Surrey v Yorkshire at the Brit Oval
Kent v Middlesex at Upchurch CC
Warwickshire v Sussex at Wellesbourne CC

Monday 6th May (11am start)

Essex v Yorkshire at Billericay CC
Notts v Kent at Welbeck CC
Middlesex v Berkshire at Uxbridge CC
Sussex v Surrey at the County Ground Hove

With only one game completed, due to the weather, in Week One (Kent beat Warwickshire in a low-scoring game) it is still early days for assessing the relative strengths of the teams. The only real indicator is club and university form. Loughborough Uni also take on the England Academy today, which should also be a good form guide.

On Day One Essex will hope to overcome Notts on a normally flat Garon Park wicket. It will help that Essex bat Karen Baker notched her first century of the season for Loughton last weekend, but Notts' Sonia Odedra has also hit some form for Clifton and Danni Wyatt will be looking to make an impact for her new county. Should be a tight high-scoring game.
Great to see Surrey entertaining Yorkshire at the Oval. Lauren Winfield has been in great touch and will be looking forward to batting on the Oval square. Yorkshire should be too strong for Surrey.
England skipper Charlotte Edwards did not play in Kent's first game of the season, but opened up her 2013 with a century for new club Wokingham Ridgeway. Middlesex are a young team and may have trouble keeping the Kent girls in check.
Sussex take a full strength team to Warwickshire and should be difficult to beat. Georgia Elwiss has hit runs for Meir Heath CC and Sarah Taylor runs for Walmley CC men and women, but Warwickshire have some potentially exciting players.

On Day Two Essex will take on the travelling Yorkshire, fresh from the Oval. I think Yorkshire might just pip Essex in another tight game.
Kent will be making the journey up to Notts for their Monday game. I think Notts might just pull off a bit of a shock win.
Middlesex host Berkshire for their only game of the weekend. Heather Knight will lead her young Berkshire side from the front and it is likely to come down to one outstanding performance from an individual to win the game. Too close to call.
And finally Sussex host Surrey at the County Ground at Hove. There are not many better places to be on a sunny day - plus there is a beer festival within the ground! Sussex to win.

Come Tuesday there will be lots of tired bodies and plenty of stories to tell. Let us have yours at cricket@lawdox.co.uk


Monday, 29 April 2013

Edwards shines on Wokingham Club Debut

Here is a full round-up of all this weekend's top club league news.

Southern Premier League
England skipper Charlotte Edwards was the star of the Southern League this weekend with a century on her debut for her new club team - Wokingham Ridgeway - the new merged team of Wokingham and Reading. Wokingham beat Bath by 25 runs. They racked up 232/4 against Bath in their 50 overs with Edwards top scoring with 109. She shared an opening stand of 132 with her younger England colleague Heather Knight (57), and 75 with England Academy player Lissy Macleod (42). In response Bath lost an early wicket, but Janet Goldman (56) and Sophie Luff (85) responded well. But when they fell Bath could not maintain the required run rate and fell just short.

A strong Hayes squad beat Hursley by 9 wickets. Put into bat Hursley were indebted to Jemma Green's 54 and Harriet Batchelor's 96 ball 23, which allowed them to post 129 all out in the 48th over. But Hayes made short work of their reply led by Lydia Greenway (65*) and Kathryn Leng (47*) as they romped home in less than half their overs.

Loughton beat Bexley by 192 runs after they clocked up 244/3 in their 50 overs, with Karen Baker helping herself to 114. Ten player Bexley were bowled out for just 52 with Beth Langston taking 4/5. It looks like it may be a long season for Bexley.

In the other game Brighton conceded to Finchley, when they lost five players to a Brighton College 1st XI girls' game.

It looks like Hayes, Wokingham and Bath are the front-runners in the Southern League.

Midlands Premier League
Sheffield United beat Clifton Village by 33 runs
in a high scoring game. Sheffield clocked up 230/5 in their 50 overs with Lauren Winfield, who is in fine form for both Sheffield and Loughborough University, who scored another fine 136. Ruth Barron took 4/34. Skipper Salliann Briggs also chipped in with 44 not out. Sonia Odedra led the Clifton response with an excellent 85, with support from the top order, but five wickets from Nat Sciver (5/24) sealed the game for Sheffield as Clifton finished on 197/9.

Meir Heath beat Burton Latimer by 140 runs after scoring 265/5 in their 50 overs. England's Georgia Elwiss top-scored with 87 and the rest of the top order all scored freely. Burton Latimer never looked like getting close to the required score and finished on 125/6, Steph Butler claiming 3/17.

At this stage its tough to look beyond Sheffield's strength in depth, aided by their links with Loughborough University, who incidentally take on the England Academy tomorrow, which should be a good match. I shouldn't of course forget Walmley, who did not play this week, but beat Sheffield in Week One and can boast Sarah Taylor amongst their number.

South West Premier League
Just two games again this weekend with Bristol Phoenix beating Taunton St Andrews by 88 runs. Alex MacDonald (62) and Abby Evans (63) starred with the bat for the Phoenix, who made 209/6in their 45 overs. Taunton were bowled out for 121 in reply with MacDonald rounding off a fine day with 5/19, while Chloe Davis took 3/19.
In a tight game Newport beat Plympton by one wicket winning off the last ball of the game. Plympton managed 156/6 with Amara Carr top scoring with 42. In reply Joanne Westwood (54) and Lauren Parfitt (38) set up the Newport victory, but it was Claire Thomas (22) that held the tail together. She was out with two runs still needed for victory, but 10 and 11 - Aimee Hughes and Rachel Nicholas - saw Newport home.

Newport seem the team to beat, but it looks like being a hard-fought league.

Cheshire First Division
The first two league games in the Cheshire top-flight were played this week.
Appleton squeaked past Romiley on a better run rate in a low-scoring rain-affected game. Appleton made 148/5 from 40 overs and Romiley were on 89/6 off 25 overs when proceedings were brought to a halt.
Chester Broughton Hall beat Stalybridge St Pauls, also by a better run-rate. Chester scored 268/0 in their 40 overs and Stalybridge were on 51/7 after 22 overs when the game was called off.


Friday, 26 April 2013

Club Cricket takes Centre Stage Again

It is another Sunday of club fixtures this week in the five regional leagues, although I cannot tell you anything about the Yorkshire Women's League as the Play Cricket website does not seem to be updated (apart from Beverley beat Treeton last week by 3 wickets). Do they not like Play Cricket in Yorkshire, or are they just keeping their players under wraps?

In the Southern Premier League Finchley take on Brighton; Hursley take on Hayes; Loughton take on Bexley; and Bath take on Wokingham. The two games to watch out for are the Hursley v Hayes fixture and the Bath v Wokingham fixture. Hayes rolled over Finchley with ease last week and Hursley looked a decent batting team against Brighton. Bath demolished 9 player Bexley last week, but will find Wokingham a stiffer task, for whom we understand England skipper Charlotte Edwards is now on the player roster. It will be good to see some competitive cricket for the stronger sides in the Southern League this week.

There are just two games again in the South West Premier League - Plympton take on last week's winners Newport in what should be a good clash. Bristol Phoenix, who just lost out to Newport last week, will be looking to beat Taunton Griffins, who have some interesting names in their squad list, including Caroline Atkins and Jodie Dibble. Squad lists and players turning out are not quite the same thing though.

In the Midlands Premier League Meir Heath take on Burton Latimer - MH lost their first match and BL won theirs; Quatt take on Pershore - Quatt lost to BL last week and Pershore, yet to play, had a good 2012, but have they still got the players they had last year? The final game is Sheffield United v Clifton Village, which should be the game of the weekend in terms of overall quality on show.

In Division 1 of the Cheshire League (they do not have a Premier Division) last year's champions Appleton take on Romily and Chester Broughton host Stalybridge St Pauls. Sunday, Monday and Tuesday also see the first round games in their knockout cup competition (in which 11 teams take part) - Bredbury St Marks v Hawarden Park; Trafford Metrovics v Oakmere and Stalybridge St Pauls v Stockport Trinity.

Club cricket varies enormously in standard from club to club, and often even within a club from week to week. The inclusion of one or two "key" players can make an enormous difference to a team's fortunes. Many teams, even in these top leagues, struggle to put out a side at all on occasions. The aim has to be to improve the overall quality and consistency of club cricket for women and girls, but the question is how can this best be done? Any ideas? We'd love to hear them, along with all your match highlights and reports.

cricket@lawdox.co.uk for all comments - good or bad - we can take it!


Monday, 22 April 2013

Women's Club Cricket Round-Up - Sunday 21st April

Well the sun shone (on and off) on most of the UK, although it was definitely a two jumper day. This is a round-up of the scores and performances that I have been able to find in the five premier leagues played across England and Wales. If I have missed you or your team out then please let me know - cricket@lawdox.co.uk.

South West Premier
Just one game was completed in the South West Premier League in which Newport beat Bristol Phoenix by 4 wickets. Bristol set Newport 156 to win, based around solid contributions from Fi Morris (32), Alex MacDonald (41) and Emily Robinson (37). Kathryn Hudson picked up 2/24 from her 9 overs. Newport got off to a good start in reply thanks to openers Lauren Parfitt (23) and Gaby Baketter (30), but a middle order collapse saw them fall to 81/5, but Rebecca Struthers (42) and Tash Cable (33*) added 49 for the sixth wicket, and Newport got home with four wickets to spare. Chloe Davis took 3/39 for the Phoenix.

The other scheduled match between St Austell and Plympton was abandoned after St Austell's innings of 96/6 (Rebecca Donohue took 3/12 off 9 overs).

Midlands Premier
Burton Latimer picked up a comfortable 8 wicket win over Quatt. Lizzie Harrison took 5/9 in her 10 over spell as Quatt reached 111/9 in their 50 overs. Openers Laura Tonks and Emma Woodcraft both contrived to get themselves out for 49, but were the only casualties in the BL innings.

A star-studded Meir Heath side was not strong enough to overcome Clifton Village, who chased down MH's 191 with relative ease in 44 overs and with just 4 wickets down. Danni Wyatt top scored for MH with 51 and Georgia Elwiss scored 32, but West Indian Shanel Daley could only contribute 10 before she was spectacularly caught and bowled by Rebecca Widdowson, who took 4/31. Clifton's top five all then got into the 20s and 30s to cruise home.

Walmley started their season with a win over Sheffield Utd, for whom only Lauren Winfield (73) and Tammy Beaumont (25) reached double figures as they were bowled out for 153. Elizabeth Russell claimed 3/11 and there were two wickets apiece for Georgia Hennessy, Laura Crofts and Isabelle Watson. England's Sarah Taylor lead the reply on her debut for the club with 56 not out, as Walmley reached their target with four wickets in hand.

Southern Premier
Loughton conceded to Wokingham

Bath demolished Bexley claiming a nine wicket win. Bexley were bowled out for just 70 with only one batter scoring more than 10. Jenny Withers took 4/4 in 5.1 overs. England's Anya Shrubsole did not bowl but opened the batting and scored an unbeaten 45 as Bath won the game in just 8.4 overs.

Hursley Park overcame Brighton by 37 runs. Batting first Hursley scored 178/9 thanks to 43 from opener Charlotte Taylor and good contributions from Eleanor Ingram (23), Alex Bartin (23) and Amy Mistry (20). Jade Elphick picked up 3/33 and there were two wickets apiece for Freya Davies, Tanya Wake and Rebecca Silk. In reply Emma Beamish (23) and Freya Davies (38) seemed to have Brighton on course for a win, but Amy Mistry took 4/18 and Eleanor Ingram got three stumpings to end Brighton's resistance on 141.

Hayes Hurricanes ran roughshod over Finchley Gunns, bowling them out for just 60, with five wickets on debut for right arm medium pacer Jasmine Titmuss (5/9). In reply Lydia Greenway helped herself to 30* as Hayes sailed past the required 61 runs with just one wicket down.

Cheshire League
No league games this week, but there was the traditional curtain-raiser between last year's champions, Appleton, and a League representative team, which the League XI won by two wickets, but with just one ball to spare. They just managed to chase down Appleton's 134/7 for whom Raffaella Rodighiero top scored with 25. In reply the League XI looked in dire straits at 98/7 but Ellie Barnett (11) and Phoebe Cottam (23*) took the score to 130 before Barnett fell, and the League XI just managed to sneek over the line.

Yorkshire League
The Yorkshire League website seems to have kicked into life this morning, but as yet no scorecards are available. I will update this blog as soon as I can with scores from the first weekend's fixtures.


Thursday, 18 April 2013

Women's Cricket - Midlands the place to watch!!

There are no County Championship games this weekend, so the players' focus turns to club cricket to try and get a few overs under their belts, or a bit of time at the crease.

Women's club cricket is now split into five regional leagues - Midlands, South, South West, Yorkshire and Cheshire - now financially supported by the ECB. In previous years there had been a North and South Premier League, but this involved too much travelling for those involved.

The standard of games can vary enormously with many clubs, even in the Premier Divisions, struggling to put out a team on occasions. But early in the season, and when there are key games, you will find many of the England and County girls are keen to pitch up and represent their clubs.

In the South Premier League the pick of the games will probably be the clash between Hayes and Finchley. Hayes are led by Lydia Greenway and number many of the Kent team amongst their ranks, including Tash Farrant. Finchley are led by Beth Morgan and have many of the MCC Academy girls at their disposal, not to mention the England captain, Charlotte Edwards, who may be back in action after a couple of month's break after the World Cup in India.

In the Midlands Premier League Walmley take on Sheffield United Ladies and Meir Heath are at Clifton Village in Nottingham. Making her debut for Walmley will be Sussex and England star Sarah Taylor, who hopes to be selected for the men's team during the season. She will be taking on many of the England Academy/Loughborough Students who turn out for Sheffield United, including Lauren Winfield, Nat Sciver and Tammy Beaumont. Meir Heath can not only boast of England stars in Danni Wyatt and Georgia Elwiss, but also newly flown in West Indian Shanel Daley. Clifton Village may have their work cut out.

There are just two matches in the South West Premier League with last year's South West League champions Bristol Phoenix travelling into Wales to take on Newport, and St Austell hosting Plympton. Both Newport and St Austell are new to the league this year.

In the North it appears no games are scheduled for this weekend theYorkshire Women's Regional League and Division One games in the Cheshire league start a week on Sunday.

We'll check out all the scorecards next week and bring you the highlights - if you think you or a team mate should get a mention then email us at cricket@lawdox.co.uk or tweet @wmnscricketblog.



Monday, 15 April 2013

Week One Women's County Championship - Rain, Wickets and a Surprise West Indian!

I suppose it was inevitable that the rain would intervene in the first weekend's County Championship fixtures. At least it was rain and not snow, so perhaps the weather is moving in the right direction? But the weather could not prevent it being an exciting start to both top divisions, or a first appearance for an English county from a West Indian star.

In Divisions One and Two only three of the scheduled seven games were possible. The only First Division game to survive was the intriguing fixture between last year's Division Two winners - Warwickshire - and last year's Division One champions - Kent. Kent arrived without Susie Rowe (who is on loan to Surrey this season), without Laura Marsh, who is still recovering from a shoulder operation, and without England skipper Charlotte Edwards, who was having a break in France. They did however have 16 year old left armer seamer Tash Farrant. She proceeded to blow away the Warwickshire top order - England's Amy Jones for 0; Helen Shipman 1; and Georgia Hennessy 0. Warwickshire in the mire at 4/3. It was a mire from which they never really managed to extract themselves finishing on 90/9 off their 50 overs. On the face of it not much of a score, but you don't know how well one side have batted until the other side have also had a go. Kent too were soon wallowing in mud at 44/4 with almost half their overs gone. It was time for skipper for the day, England's Lydia Greenway, to stand up and be counted, and with 44 runs she did just that. She received great support from Grace Gibbs (14), and they took the Kent score to 74/5 before Gibbs fell. Kent got home, but a late flurry of wickets, amidst the drizzle, meant they won with only three wickets to spare. It just goes to show that last year's Champions will not have things all their own way this year.

In Division Two former Division One team Somerset took on Worcestershire, who just missed out on promotion last year. Somerset batted first and made steady progress with the top four all getting into double figures - Anya Shrubsole, Ellwyn Campbell, Sophie Luff and Fran Wilson, but from 85/4 they slipped to 98/9 as Thea Brookes (4/26) ripped through the middle order. It was only thanks to a last wicket stand of 31 between Lauren Shrubsole (16*) and Jenny Withers (10), that Somerset made it to 129 before they were bowled out in the 47th over. Unfortunately Worcestershire could not get going against tight bowling from Somerset and had struggled to 30/4 off 20 overs before proceedings were brought to a halt due to the bad weather. As 20 overs had been completed the winner was decided on run rate, which meant Somerset took the win.

The other Division Two game resulted in a fairly comfortable win for Staffordshire against a young Cheshire team. Invited to bat Cheshire managed to score 128 before they were bowled out with just one ball of their innings remaining. Their total was built around a solid 52 from opener Jenny Halstead. Wickets were shared amongst the Staffordshire bowlers and it must have come as a bit of a shock to the Cheshire batsmen when one of those bowlers turned out to be West Indian Shanel Daley. She is playing for local team Meir Heath and will be with Staffs until 21st July, so should play in all the county's games. Cheryl Allcock (36*) and Francesca James (46) made sure Staffs got off to a winning start overhauling the required target with only three wickets down, but only in the 49th over. Daley made a jet-lagged 7.

The next round of games are on Sunday 5th May. More details and a preview of those games in the week before they are played.

Warwicks v Kent  - http://ecbwcountychampionship.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11707834
Staffs v Cheshire - http://ecbwcountychampionship.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11713086
Worcs v Somerset - http://ecbwcountychampionship.play-cricket.com/scoreboard/scorecard.asp?id=11713097


Saturday, 13 April 2013

Women's County Champ 14/4/13 - latest news

 The latest information we have on the first week's games being played on Sunday 14th April is as below:-
(updated at 17.47 Sun 14/4/13)

Division One (11am start)
Sussex v Berkshire at East Grinstead Cricket Club - CANCELLED
Surrey v Essex at Reeds School - CANCELLED
Warwickshire v Kent at Wellesbourne Cricket Club - Warwickshire batting first - 90/9 off their 50 overs- Kent 91/8 in 39th over - Kent win by 2 wickets
Middlesex v Yorkshire at John Lyon School Playing Fields - CANCELLED

Division Two (11am start)
Staffordshire v Cheshire at Oakmoor Cricket Club - Cheshire 128 all out - Staffs 129/3 - Staffs win by 7 wickets
Wales v Durham at Lisvane Cricket Club - CANCELLED
Lancashire v Ireland - postponed to 15th July
Worcestershire v Somerset at Pershore Cricket Club - Somerset 129 all out - Worcs 30/4 off 20 overs - no further play - Somerset win on better run rate


Sunday, 7 April 2013

Women's County Championship - First weekend's fixtures

The Women's County Championship kicks off this Sunday 14th April with the following fixtures :-

Division One (11am start)
Sussex v Berkshire at East Grinstead Cricket Club
Surrey v Essex at Reeds School
Warwickshire v Kent at Wellesbourne Cricket Club
Middlesex v Yorkshire at John Lyon School Playing Fields

Division Two (11am start)
Staffordshire v Cheshire at Oakmoor Cricket Club
Wales v Durham at Lisvane Cricket Club
Lancashire v Ireland - postponed to 15th July
Worcestershire v Somerset at Pershore Cricket Club

In Division One Berkshire fresh from their successful warm-up games with Ireland in sunny Spain will be hoping to push Sussex hard, but Sussex may just have too much firepower for them to be contained, if all their England players are fit and available. Kent will look to get off to a winning start, but new kids Warwickshire will have nothing to lose and if they can prise Lottie Edwards out they might be in with a shout. Surrey v Essex and Middlesex v Yorkshire are both likely to be tight, but with the home sides perhaps just edging to victory.

In Division Two Staffordshire may be too strong for a young Cheshire side, and Durham will have their work cut out against the Wales batting line-up. But the tie of the first week will be at Worcestershire where Somerset may find this will be a tough start to their season, unless Anya Shrubsole can lead from the front, particularly with the ball.

It is going to be a great opening week and we will give you a full run down on the top performances and results early next week.