Tigers retain Nelson Cup


Judd Street Tigers 84-4 beat London Saints 82-9 by 6 wickets

London Saints 105-1 beat Sunderland 104-6 by 9 wickets

Judd Street Tigers 156-3 beat Sunderland 80-3 by 76 runs


Some may argue that this competition is something of an anachronism; that it is a cup sponsored by a public house in Brentford, west London, that no longer has any connections with the club; that it is competed against veteran teams whom West Eleven played as far back as the late nineteen-eighties, and that the Tigers are odds-on favourites to win every year.

The counter argument is that this all-day competition is a chance to renew old cricketing friendships and rivalries, and, in the modern era where Sunday social cricket is perhaps now more demanding than ever, represents a fairly light-hearted contest which, in its present format, allows for everyone to get a bat and bowl. As for being a foregone conclusion, Saints‘ victory over a strong Sunderland side proves that, in a short-distance match, any result is possible.


Saints kicked off the first session on another cold, grey Winchmore Hill day against the Tigers with a promising start of 34 for the first wicket, then collapsed to 49-7, induced by a 3-1 burst from Chris Dane. Griffiths (20) had dominated the opening exchanges, but no one else got to grips with the Tigers’ attack until a ninth-wicket partnership of 28 between loanees Steve Bignell and Mike Herlihy boosted the total to a modest 82 from their 18 overs.

The Saints then took to the field against Sunderland, who put up a par score of 104, Stewart top-scoring with 26, plus 16 from Cotton and 15 from Jones, Pearce taking 3-17. The Tigers then batted for the first time, hitting 156 – the best score of the day by a long way, thanks to 37 from Chris Boden and a savage undefeated fifty from Rowan Allerton. Chris Wright added a further 29 with Barnaby Pinfield (15*) after Rowan retired not out under the rules of the day.

The Tigers then notched up the first victory of the afternoon, completing game one with a six-wicket win over the Saints, Steve Rennie making 22 not out, Chris Dane 22 and Jimmy Carter 16. The Saints then put in a great batting performance to overcome Sunderland by nine wickets, Griffiths making an undefeated 50 and Mayhew 24. Herlihy then hit the winning runs with 11 balls to spare.

Tigers still needed to beat Sunderland to retain the trophy and this final match was never in doubt, the Mackems being able to make only 80-3 in their 18 overs (Cotton 25, Jones 20*) and falling 76 short. Griffiths finished as top batsman with 70 runs, whilst Simon Warren of the Tigers’ and Saints’ Pearce shared the bowling honours with 4 wickets each.


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