West of England Premier League
Premier 1
Bridgwater 247-6 beat Goatacre 246 by 4 wkts

BRIDGWATER 1st XI finished the season in style with a win at relegated Goatacre, courtesy of an unbeaten 106 from Somerset’s George Bartlett.

This final result saw Bridgwater finish with four wins from their final five games, for a respectable sixth-placed finish in a very strong Premier 1.

The relegation of Frocester and Goatacre means that Bridgwater are now the longest serving residents of the division, aside from Bath CC.

The home side won the toss and decided to make first use of the pitch, but the in-form Chris Skidmore proved tough work for the Goatacre batsmen in his first spell.

Skidmore and Calum Haggett picked up a wicket apiece to dismiss both openers, but a mixture of plucky hitting and the short boundaries meant that partnerships were built quickly and, at times, Bridgwater struggled to control the run rate.

Crucially the visitors were able to pick up wickets at regular intervals as Max Waller snared three, and Haggett and the Skidmore brothers (Andrew and Chris) two apiece, meaning that Goatacre were dismissed for a competitive 246 with 10 overs unused.

This was to prove key, as despite losing Andy Hallaran and Haggett early on, the away side were able to pace their run chase expertly, knowing that the small ground would be very difficult for the home side to defend.

Bartlett took his time against a decent spell by both opening bowlers, sharing stands of 87 with Stu Butt (31) and 88 with Josh Vickery (30) to put Bridgwater in control.

His innings was accumulated from 111 balls, with 11 fours and three 6s, as he saw Bridgwater home with six overs to spare, supported by an attacking cameo from Ally Witts (23).

Match ball sponsors: TMB Patterns Ltd; match travel sponsors: Charles Dickens Estate Agents and Falcon Vehicle Solutions Ltd.

The final league position of sixth is an excellent effort by Bridgwater, with the supporters being treated to some magnificent cricket across a transitional season.

Their form in the final two thirds of the campaign was that of a top three side, and the club can winter well knowing that they have the squad to challenge in 2019.


WEPL Premier 2 Bristol/Somerset
Shapwick & Polden 215-9 beat Keynsham 157 by 58 runs

SHAPWICK & Polden secured their Premier 2 status with a convincing win over Keynsham in the last league game of the season.

Shapwick were asked to bat first on soft-looking pitch, and were immediately set back when skipper Stephen Tinnion was strangled down the leg side second ball for no score.

Will Mason soon followed, lobbing to mid off from one that stopped in the pitch.

But Sam Edmunds (68) continued his fine season, and along with Fionn Hand (29) they added 51 for the third wicket.

Hand showed great invention, the highlight being his scoop over the keeper’s head, but he took on spinner Wheller (3-37) but was only able to find mid on.

Wayne Spencer (12) and John Stratton (17) added useful runs with Edmunds, but at 149-5 the game was very much in the balance.

Ben Rudge’s positive approach saw him return to form with 35 from 39 balls and Steve Coppell added a useful 15, taking Shapwick past 200.

Come the reply, Coppell (1-17) and Hand (1-33) started threateningly, but several wides and some good running allowed Keynsham to get to 40 before Coppell accounted for Bancroft.

Harry Woolway picked up the important wicket of Jarman (1), caught at slip by Stratton, and then Mitchell (39), who attempted one pull too many before being bowled.

Pannell (21) and Gwyther (26) brought the score onto 113-3 before the game-changing run-out from Edmunds, who threw from short third man with Pannell short of his ground.

Spencer (3-36) had Gwyther caught at mid on and Rudge (1-27) had Keates well caught at slip by Stratton, as 113-3 quickly become 113-6, effectively ending Keynsham’s hopes.

Jordan (16) and Tweedie (18) attempted to fight back, before Spencer had the former trapped in front.

A brilliant bit of fielding off his own bowling had Wheller (6) run out by Hand, and next ball he castled Tweedie to end it.

Shapwick took an important 19 points from the game to seal survival, moving to sixth in the process.


Bridgwater Mercury:

FIVE-FER: North Petherton bowler Jack Bradbury ended with 5-62 against Bridgwater 2nds. Pic: Steve Richardson

WEPL Somerset Division
Bridgwater 2nds 283 beat North Petherton 194 by 89 runs

TOM Bellinger ended his season in style, firing 155 as Bridgwater 2nds comfortably saw off the challenge of neighbours North Petherton at The Parks on Saturday.

Having won the toss and elected to bat, Bridgwater’s innings took a while to get going as Jack Bradbury removed both openers.

Bellinger led the recovery from 40-2, adding 116 with Ben Coombes (37) as he moved through the gears with ease.

Wickets were falling regularly at the other end but Bellinger stayed on the attack, eventually becoming the eighth man out having his 17 fours and seven sixes in a sparkling 155 from 140 balls.

Bradbury mopped up the tail to finish with 5-62 from 10 overs but 283 was always going to be a tough chase for Pethy, and so it proved.

Lewis Irish and Max Trevarthan both fell without scoring and Ryan Meppem made just three as opener Harry Bowditch, who was going well himself, lost several early partners in quick succession.

Bowditch raced to 79 from 52 deliveries - including 12 fours and three sixes - but his departure left the score 116-7 and put the result beyond doubt.

Pethy captain Paul Short compiled an unbeaten 40 as he and Jordan Boobyer (24) delayed the inevitable by adding 68 for the final wicket, but the visitors were dismissed for 194.

The result means Bridgwater 2nds finish the season in a very creditable third place in a division otherwise entirely made up of first XI’s.

North Petherton’s defeat saw them slip below Wembdon into eighth.


WEPL Somerset Division
Wembdon 168-5 beat Chard 165 by 5 wkts

WEMBDON’S final day fixture saw them travel to Chard in search of consecutive wins, knowing that results elsewhere could leave them perilously close to the dropzone.

The visitors had a bowl, and Jon Brockwell and Brendan Pope started very economically, conceding 22 runs from the first 10 overs.

The first wicket came in the seventh over, when Pope’s swinging delivery trapped Lee Brun (9).

In Pope’s next over he trapped Nathan Johnson (0) to bowl two consecutive wicket maiden overs.

Wembdon had to wait 11 overs for the third wicket as opener Dening was patiently accumulating alongside Liam Cleal (9).

The pair moved Chard on to 56 from the 20th over, but the spin of Josh Henry got the breakthrough with a good catch from Brockwell.

Passing the half way point in the innings Chard still had seven wickets in hand, but James Annison had Mbanga (20) caught and Clancy was bowled by Sam Puddy.

Having brought up his half century, Dening started to play more freely until a good catch from Jack Lowe off the bowling of Puddy removed him for 78.

Max Sellick (2-15) and Puddy (4-44) wrapped up the Chard innings as a mixture of spin and seam dismissed the hosts for 165 in the 45th over.

Chard opened up with the dangerous Mbanga, who had taken six wickets in the fixture earlier in the season and wasted no time here, bowling Tom Brooks (1).

Pope (11) managed to strike a few early boundaries until he was cleaned bowled by Richard Scott.

Lowe (9) had been in good form of late and looked comfortable at the crease, looking to rebuild with Brockwell but, with the score on 35, he was trapped lbw.

Dan Bingham was next to join Brockwell, who played the more aggressive role, striking seven 4s and three 6s on his way to 58.

A partnership of 68 with Bingham in 14 overs moved Wembdon on to 100, before Brockwell was caught off Mbanga.

Mike Watts (42) came in and found the boundary himself seven times, before being bowled with just two runs needed for victory.

Bingham made his way to 34 not out before, fittingly, overseas cricketer Josh Henry – in his final game for the club after two very impressive years – struck the ball for four to win the match.

Wembdon’s five-wicket win secured WEPL Somerset safety and moved them up to seventh.

Match sponsor: Dave Bradley and E18hteen Gin

Wembdon Cricket Club wishes to thank all the community for their support in 2018 - sponsors, scorers, tea ladies and players etc.

Exciting times lay ahead with the appointment of a first team coach and a senior coach as Wembdon will be looking to challenge back at the top of the division.