Thrilling victory

PUBLISHED: 14:46 12 July 2017 | UPDATED: 14:46 12 July 2017

Cricket

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Backwell Flax Bourton emerged winners against Congresbury in an exciting match which keeps them on target with their promotion push.

Backwell Flax Bourton were made to work hard for a third straight win after a thrilling comeback by Congresbury, led by an incredible 94 not out by teenager Euan Campbell.

Flax skipper, Mark Fitzgibbon won the toss and opted to bat against a youthful Congresbury in the sunshine.

Fitzgibbon himself signalled some early intent by striking the first ball of the innings over gully for four and with fellow opener, Tim Martin, looked to impose themselves early and get on top.

Congresbury rotated the bowling attack as the temperatures rose, only Toby Lawrence looked capable of breaking the Flax first wicket partnership.

Martin and Fitzgibbon followed each other run for run as the score moved past 50 in the eighth over and then quickly past 100 in the 15th as Martin hammered the loose ball.

Martin fell on 75, with the score on 162, trapped lbw trying to sweep the bowling of Elmont which brought Ian Gear to the crease, who picked up where Martin had left off, quickly getting in to his stride with successive boundaries as Fitzgibbon patiently closed in on his maiden Flax ton.

Campbell (the pick of the Cogresbury attack with figures of 9-1-40-2) was reintroduced to the attack in the 36th over and began to haul things back, by taking the wicket of Fitzgibbon for a superb 92.

Sam Flowers (41) instantly hit out to move the run rate on again and in partnership with Ian Gear (53 not out) set a total of 296-3 with Flowers, Campbell’s second victim falling in the final over.

Congrebury’s reply got off to an uneasy start as some nervous running in the first over led to James Vowles well short after being sent back when looking to complete a quick single.

Alex Kay & Toby Lawrence slowly settled the ship and took the score to 65 before Kay was caught in the covers by Ben Walter off the bowling of Pete Beale (9-1-41-3).

Two further wickets fell for just three runs and at 68-4 as Matt Darbon (9-2-24-2) and Beale hauled the game in to Flaxes favour, a big Flax victory looked likely.

Eyres and Lawrence were patient in their shot selection and when both Eyres (37) and Lawrence (with a well-earned 52) departed, Congresbury were still well behind the run rate and looking at defeat with just 12 overs remaining and the score at 143-7.

Spurred on by the spirited Congresbury faithful and supported by Kian Ware (22), Campbell assumed centre stage and began to hit out with both controlled aggression and with increasing regularity started clearing the ropes.

He moved to 50 in no time at all, frequently taking the required 15 runs per over from some wayward Flax bowling.

Even when Ware was brilliantly run out in the 39th over and the score at 215-8, the game looked to be swinging in Congresbury’s favour as Campbell reduced the target to under 40 with four overs to go.

Flax’s Henry Acreman (8.1-0-32-2) was reintroduced and he proved too accurate for the final two Congresbury batsmen as Campbell was left stranded with a remarkable not out score of 94 under his belt as Congresbury finished 30 runs short.

Flax entertain Bristol Civil Service on 15th July at Flaxmead from 1.30pm as they seek to continue their promotion push.

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