Impactful innings from Andrew Kavanagh and Barry Grimes saw The Hills 2 overcome a spirited effort from Greystones by 8 runs in the first final of Sunday at Anglesea Road, the YMCA Salver sponsored by Goldfish Telecom.
Having won the toss, Greystones elected to field first. They may have been slightly worried early on as Matt Richards and Athar Farooqi opening the batting for the Skerries side traded boundaries in the early overs. When Richards was dismissed by skipper Michael Kirk in the second, Andrew Kavanagh came to the crease and continued the fast start.
With the score at 44/1 after the opening five overs, Kavanagh and Farooqi had total control and Greystones were staring down the barrel of a mammoth chase unless something changed quickly. A double bowling change was initiated and momentum began to swing. Phil Wilkinson bowled Farooqi for a flair filled 17 in his first over and along with Manpreet Singh, the pair wrestled Greystones back into the game.
Wilkinson completed his spell of 4 overs with 1/23 while Singh’s 2/16 was by far the most impressive spell of the innings. Andrew Kavanagh had nearly negotiated his way through the entirety of this tight spell when Singh bowled him for an excellent 48.
Thorfinn Newton had been given the unenviable mission of following Wilkinson’s spell and having bowled overs 14, 16 and 18 conceding only 14 runs, was proving more than up to the task. There was however one more change in momentum to come.
Barry Grimes batting at 7 for The Hills took the long handle to Newton’s final over and a combination of good strokes, brute force and some fortunate placement meant the final 6 balls yielded 21 runs, and even with what appeared to be around a par score of 131/6, The Hills will have walked off feeling on top.
Greystones would have been delighted with chasing that total given the score after 5 overs, but could be forgiven if they had felt they let a few runs slip away from them at the end.
Openers Harry Kirk and Mirwais Nawabzai began relatively sedately, rotating the strike with Kirk punishing anything wayward early on. With the score on 21, of which Nawabzai had taken 17, The Hills skipper Roger Kear stepped up to the mark to clean bowl the dangerous Greystones opener, this brought his opposite number to the crease and the Kirk brothers began to try get their team into the game.
In Kear’s final over, some brilliant glovework by Colm Cuneen saw Harry Kirk stumped for 24. Thorfinn Newton came to the crease and himself and Michael Kirk progressed the score to 64 at which point the Greystones captain nicked Killian Everard through to Cuneen behind the stumps. The game was in the balance and Manpreet Singh arrived at the crease.
Andrew Kavanagh and Barry Grimes were then both introduced to the attack and proved just as important with the ball as they had been with the bat. Kavanagh’s leg-spin was perfect for the pitch and his excellent control meant his 4 overs went for just 20 runs, crucially this spell allowed Kear to keep his key man Everard for the death overs. He returned for the 18th over and caught and bowled Newton to put a real squeeze on.
Grimes had bowled an excellent first three overs and a well-directed yorker took care of Stephen Roughan before Grimes himself effected the run out of Martin Potts the very next ball. Phil Cheetham came to the crease and took 12 from the final 4 balls of Grimes’ spell. In spite of this his final 4 overs from the bottom end brought just 23 runs. With 19 needed from the final 6 deliveries, Greystones would have been hoping the innings would mirror the first however Muhammad Hassan held his nerve, conceding just 11 and helping The Hills to a 7 run victory
Goldfish Telecom YMCA Salver Final 2020
The Hills 2, 131/6 (20 overs) A Kavanagh 48, B Grimes 19*; M Singh 2/16
Greystones 1, 124/7 (20 overs) H Kirk 24, P Cheetham 20*; K Everard 2/22, B Grimes 2/23, R Kear 2/24
by 7 runs