UPPERTHONG are the Sellers Junior Cricket League Under 11 Champion of Champions!
The Section A champions beat Denby Dale – Section B title winners – by 48 runs to claim the trophy.
This was the inaugural Under 11 Champion of Champions and, before the final, both teams were presented with their championship shields by Ian Livesey, chairman of the league’s Under 11 section.
He also presented individual awards to the seasons’s best performers – the bowling award to Harvey Booth of Lascelles Hall; batting to Chris Hinchliffe of Meltham, fielding to Alex Jaques of Denby Dale and wicketkeeping to Joe Ramsden of Upperthong.
When the final got under way, the slow wicket made life difficult for the batsmen.
Upperthong’s first pair played solidly but the breakthrough came when Liam Greig had Ed Clowes caught in the covers.
George Oakley accelerated the scoring for Upperthong in the middle of the innings with a combative 12, but all the Denby Dale bowlers put the ball in the right places.
Despite the unerring accuracy of Tom Sanders (3 overs for 2 runs), Jack Tyas (identical figures), Josh Dyson (3 overs for 5) and Hayden Rose (3 overs for 4) the Upperthong batsmen all defended resolutely and the innings closed on 241-1 (net 233).
The Denby Dale first pair were in aggressive mood but a wicket in the third over when Haigh played on to Ed Clowes (2 overs, 1 wicket, 6 runs) ruined the bright start. From that point on the Upperthong bowlers began to turn the screw.
Six wickets fell in the middle of the innings, two to stumpings by Upperthong’s excellent keeper Joseph Ramsden.
The guile and flight of Henry Bratby (2-0-1-7), Kieran Parker (3-1-3-2), Alex Scott (2-0-0-11), Tom Kay (2-2-1-0) and Ben Earnshaw (2-1-0-1) combined perfectly with the pace and accuracy of Thomas Mighall (2-0-0-3) and George Oakley (3-0-0-3) to put the Dale behind the clock.
Denby Dale’s final pair, Josh Dyson and Jack Tyson, went to the crease needing 57 off the last four overs and, despite a spirited effort, a final stumping to Joe Ramsden off the bowling of Alfie Higgins (2-0-1-14) secured a comfortable victory for Upperthong.