Holders confident of retaining Cup Match crown
Somerset Cricket Club (President’s XI won toss): President’s XI beat Vice-President’s XI by 34 runs
Somerset’s captain and chairman each expressed confidence in their ability to retain the Cup Match trophy this week and ensuring St George’s more than decade-long run of futility in the Annual Classic.
Having made just a single change to the side that ran away to a ten-wicket triumph a year ago, few would fault the logic: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. Or, in this case, make only minor repairs.
The single change that has been implemented has been to insert Khiry Furbet as a colt and specialist wicketkeeper, replacing Stephen Bremar.
Cricket chairman Michael Corday, said the decision to drop Bremar was agonising, but he believed was one that strengthened an already solid squad.
“I think the selection of Khiry gives us a specialist wicketkeeper and is a good bat,” said Corday of Furbert, who top scored for the Vice-President’s XI, with 24, batting at No 6.
“I think the mindset was that now we have a specialist wicketkeeper and a batsman who is solid and, as we have the cup, strengthening the batting was the thing to do.
“I don’t think the team will skip a beat. I try not to rate our chances, but, like any year I have confidence in what is a strong, balanced team, capable of retaining the cup.”
Corday acknowledged the opposition as having chosen a team capable of performing and providing for an intriguing spectacle.
“I think St George’s have a good team this year and that it will be a better game,” he added.
Equally assured was team captain Jordan DeSilva, who noted the change as not so much necessary, but as one which improves their play in the field.
“Our make-up hasn’t really changed,” said DeSilva. “I think the change was, maybe not one which was required, but we thought Khiry impressed throughout the year and yesterday and, maybe, just did enough.
“It was, basically, all we talked about, and we figured he would give us a little bit more with the bat, as well as he’s a top keeper.
“I feel like we could have kept the team the same and it would have been no different. But Stephen has been there for three years and we appreciate the time he’s given us, and it’s not over for him by any stretch.”
Asked to rate Somerset’s chances of retaining the cup, DeSilva brimmed confidence.
“Our chances are as good as ever,” he added. “There’s no reason for us to not be confident. The last time they were here we had a resounding victory and we’re taking that confidence in with us.
“It’s our home and we’re going to try and make it difficult for them to get anywhere near taking it from us.”
On the pitch on Saturday, the President’s XI defeated the Vice-President’s XI in a low scoring affair, with Tre Manders (37) top scoring for the former with Alje Richardson adding 26, while Derrick Brangman and Malachi Jones chipped in with 28 and 25 respectively.
Dion Stovell and Antonio Darrell each took three wickets for the Vice-President’s, while Joseph Basden grabbed a brace. After Furbert, only Dalin Richardson (19) managed double figures for the team as Terron Webb tore into the batting, claiming five for 24.
C Douglas lbw b Stovell 6
K James c Fray b Darrell 17
T Manders c Fray b Basden 37
A Richardson c and b Basden 26
+ S Bremar c Furbert b Stovell 9
K Leverock c Fray b Walker 1
S Bean c Fray b Caesar 3
D Brangman lbw b Stovell 28
M Jones c Sabir b Darrell 25
*J DeSilva c Stovell b Darrell 5
G Maybury not out 5
Extras (b 3, lb 2, nb 3, w 3) 9
Total (46.2 overs) 171
Fall of wickets: 1-20, 2-26, 3-73, 4-86, 5-93, 6-95, 7-132, 8-139, 9-146.
Bowling: Smith Mills 1.3-0-6-0; Walker 10-2-23-1; Stovell 12-4-32-3; Darrell 7.5-1-37-3; Sabir 4-0-17-0; Basden 3-0-14-2; Caesar 6-0-24-1; Richardson 2-0-14-0.
T Fray retired out 56
D Stovell not out 9
J Manders b Leverock 0
D Richardson c Bremar b Maybury 19
D Sabir c and b Maybury 4
*S Outerbridge c Bremar b Jones 9
+K Furbert c and b Webb 24
A Darrell c Bremar b Webb 0
J Basden st Bremar b Webb 0
A Lee b Proctor 2
M Walker lbw b Webb 0
K Richardson b Webb 0
Extras (b 4, lb 4, nb 3) 11
Total (39.2 overs) 137
Bowling: Maybury 6-1-20-1; Leverock 4-1-13-1; Jones 3-1-6-1; Brangman 7-0-18-0; James 5-0-10-0; Proctor 7.2-0-31-1; Webb 7-2-24-5.