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Cuts overcome Rangers to boost relegation survival bid

Antonio Darrell stroked a game-high 65 and claimed two wickets to guide Willow Cuts to victory over Southampton Rangers at Somerset Cricket Club yesterday. (File photograph by Lawrence Trott)
Somerset Cricket Club (Willow Cuts won toss): Willow Cuts beat Southampton Rangers by 73 runs

Willow Cuts romped to a comfortable victory over Western Counties rivals Southampton Rangers to bolster their chances of avoiding relegation.

All-rounder Antonio Darrell was the hero for the hosts as he blasted a boundary-laden fifty and claimed two wickets with his medium pace to guide Cuts to an impressive league double over the visitors.

The 26-year-old thumped seven fours and a six in his game-high knock of 65 that helped power Cuts to a total that ultimately proved beyond Rangers’ reach.

He also featured in two fruitful partnerships as Cuts piled up 251 for seven in their allotted overs; adding 63 with opener Solomon Burrows and 52 with middle-order bat Deunte Darrell.

“I looked at the scoreboard and saw that we were behind a bit, so I upped the tempo and just tried to carry through for the team,” Darrell said of his superb innings.

“I am confident and knew I still had good batsmen behind me, so I just played my innings. I hoped to score big and that’s what happened.

“The track wasn’t doing much; there wasn’t much movement.

“Straight up and down, so I was able to just play through the line, and that’s what was doing it for me.”

Darrell reached a maiden fifty for the season off 72 balls in style as he carted Charles Trott over wide mid-wicket for six.

“I didn’t even know I was on 48,” he added.

“I was just playing and not worrying about the score was. I just wanted to put a good total on the board and just believe in my team-mates as well.”

The player also produced the goods with the ball during the second innings as he claimed two for 33 after being brought into the attack as first change.

“At first it was a bit sketchy,” Darrell said. “I got hit around the field a bit, but I didn’t give up.

“I still believed in myself and kept going through, and the pitch worked in my favour.”

Among his victims was Rangers player-coach Janeiro Tucker, who was bowled playing on the back foot.

“Janeiro was the most important wicket to me,” Darrell said. “He is a very good player, so to get him out is a very proud moment.”

Cuts opted to bat first and got useful contributions throughout the order with Burrows (50), Deunte Darrell (28) and Dwight Basden (27) also getting among the runs.

Nirobi Smith-Mills was the pick of the Rangers bowling with three for 36 while off spinner Dion Stovell took two for 36.

Despite losing opener Stovell (8) cheaply, Rangers were motoring along at 11.6 runs per over early in their reply.

Opener Jelani Albouy unleashed a vicious assault on the bowling as he smashed a rapid-fire 31, which included seven fours, before being bowled by a Herbie Bascome full toss.

Dalin Richardson (12) and Janeiro Tucker (23) added a timely 40 to keep the chase on track.

But Darrell eventually made the big breakthrough by dislodging Tucker to ignite a slide which saw Rangers lose their remaining six wickets for 64 runs.

The visitors were dismissed for 178 in 26.1 overs with Kwame Tucker (19), Charles Trott (16) and Christof van Tonder (16) their remaining batsmen in double figures.

Off spinner Joseph Basden led the Cuts attack with three for nine while seamers Deunte Darrell (two for 33), Bascome (two for 31) and captain Kwasi James (two for 75) claimed two wickets apiece.

“An excellent performance all round for the guys today and it feels amazing to finally pull down another big team,” James, the Cuts captain, said.

“Rangers is always a battle for us, especially with the likes of Janeiro Tucker and Dion Stovell. Getting them early really put us in the driver’s seat.

“An excellent performance by Antonio with bat and ball. Man of the match for sure.

“Joseph is always one of our go-to spinners. He loves to vary his pace and it paid off for us today.”

Willow Cuts

S Burrows c Trott b Stovell 50

D Basden b Smith 27

A Darrell b Mills 65

*K James b Stovell 19

J Basden lbw Mills 16

D Darrell b J Tucker 28

C Basden c J Tucker b Mills 4

H Bascome not out 5

†S Bean not out 3

Extras (lb 8, nb 2, w 24) 34

Total (7 wkts; 50 overs) 251

S Gomes and S Raynor did not bat

Fall of wickets: 1- 65, 2-128, 3-180, 4-207, 5-226, 6-244, 7-244

Bowling: Mills 10-1-36-3; Stovell 9.1-1-36-2; Van Tonder 0.5-0-5-1; Trott 10-0-78-0; J Tucker 10-3-32-1; Smith 3-0-16-1; Richardson 10-0-28-0

Southampton Rangers

D Stovell b James 8

J Albouy b Bascome 31

C van Tonder lbw b Bascome 16

*D Richardson c Bean b D Darrell 12

J Tucker b A Darrell 23

C Trott b James 16

†G Simons b A Darrell 9

K Tucker c James b J Basden 19

T Smith c D Basden b J Basden 0

M Wellman c D Basden b J Basden 7

N Mills not out 2

Extras (lb 6, nb 2, w 22) 30

Total (26.1 overs) 178

Fall of wickets: 1-21, 2-60, 3-74, 4-114, 5-116, 6-116, 7-145, 8-150, 9-160.

Bowling: James 9-0-75-2; Bascome 5-0-31-2; A Darrell 6-1-33-2; D Darrell 3-0-26-1; J Basden 3-0-9-3

Umpires: R Dill and A Cumberbatch.

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Published July 18, 2022 at 1:15 am (Updated July 18, 2022 at 1:12 pm)

Cuts overcome Rangers to boost relegation survival bid

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