Newtown downed by brilliant Birch
- created on 13/06/2012
Joe Birch showed why he is the area’s hottest property at the moment with a splendid individual display to down Newtown at the weekend.
Birch scored a half century and took six wickets as Welshpool recorded a 71-run win at their cross-shire rivals for a full haul of 24 points in Division One.
Birch set the scene with a fine 63 as opener with Phil Lewis adding a steady 41 and Rob Birch unbeaten on 31 as Welshpool set an imposing target of 197-4 from 50 overs.
Newtown started well with Ricky Davies scoring 33 and opener Steve Davies scoring 23. But after the third batsman, no player reached double figures, leaving the hosts all out on 126. County player Birch did the damage with 6-35 with Rupert Shingler bowling 15 overs for 2-41.
Elsewhere, Rob Kinsey bowled a devastating spell of 5-14 off 15 overs but his Montgomery side couldn’t catch Cound in a low scoring game.
Kinsey’s efforts restricted Cound to 122-9 off their 50 overs but in reply, Monty wickets fell cheaply with only Sam Davies (30) and David Thomas (25) reaching double figures in their 97 runs.
In Division Four, Guilsfield’s season is taking shape after they chased down 177 runs at Harcourt who had threatened to run away with the game before an inspired bowling change by skipper Sam Griffiths.
With all bowlers struggling to find a way past free-scoring Rick Jarrett (63), Griffiths (3-14) brought himself on and a spectacular catch from James Langford two balls later gained the prized scalp and turned the game.
Harcourt were dismissed soon after with the tail snapped up cheaply by Dave Jones (3-27) and it sparked a thrilling run chase by the villagers. It looked unlikely until Dan Brown (73) and Dave Jones (38no) came together to win with an over to spare and four wickets down. Earlier Dave Harris (27) and Sam Griffiths (21) laid the foundations for the big hitters to attack.
Welshpool completed a double over Newtown with the second string recording a 49-run win in the Reserve League.
Former first team skipper Dale Evans made 51 and was assisted by Matt Mcwhinnie (26) as Welshpool set a useful 164 despite the best efforts of Chris Bound (4-26) and Sam Cook (5-30). Newtown fell short though on 115 with Mcwhinnie taking 5-29 and Damon Preston claiming 3-22. Cook scored 50 for Newtown.
Montgomery’s disappointing day was compounded by the second string losing to Bomere Heath II by four wickets. The batsmen found runs hard to come by and set 110-7 off their 40 overs, allowing Bomere a dramatic last over victory.
Newtown’s Dave Anthony has withdrawn from the Montgomeryshire side travelling to Denbighshire on Sunday and will be replaced by Joe Pritchard of Llanidloes.