Memories to last a lifetime even if Lords trip ends in heartache for Redbourn

Ed Hales produced a sensational innings for Redbourn in the Village Cup final. Picture: DANNY LOO

Ed Hales produced a sensational innings for Redbourn in the Village Cup final. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Archant

Redbourn were left heartbroken after their historic trip to Lords for the final of the National Village Cup ended in a narrow six-run loss.

They lost the toss and watch Colwall of Herefordshire plunder 229-6 from their 40 overs but their reply had them within striking distance in the final over.

It wasn’t to be but even in defeat the run to the final and the occasion itself, even if it was a diluted version of previous finals, will remain long in the memory for all concerned.

The match itself was fitting of any major sporting event.

Richard Howitt scored 58 for Colwall before Benjamin Wheeler, the man of the match, smashed an amazing 72 off just 33 deliveries, a knock that included three fours and seven sixes.

That came after Redbourn had made a decent start to the innings, Daniel Darvell taking the day’s first wicket in the second over and Conor Yorath, the tournament’s leading wicket-taker, left Colwall on 24-2.

Yorath would end on 2-23 from his eight overs while Darvell’s spell gave him 3-31.

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Josh Arnold was the other wicket-taker for Redbourn.

Colwall’s total was the seventh highest total in the final’s history so it was always going to be an uphill slog.

That was clearly not something that was in the thoughts of Ed Hales though as he opened the reply with brother Will by smashing the first ball for six.

He almost went to the very next delivery, the chip just missed by a diving fielder, but it set the tone for the rest of the innings.

And what an innings it was for the skipper.

He continued to tally up the boundaries, helping Redbourn reach 50 inside six overs, and he had his century in just 75 balls.

That made him the sixth man to make a ton in the final and his final score of 119, crafted from 83 deliveries and featuring 18 fours and three sixes, was the third-highest individual score in Village Cup final history.

But after his departure, the runs dried up as Colwall produced some fine economical bowling.

From needing 70 to win off 86, Redbourn found themselves needing 55 off 48, a total which had reduced to 11 off the final six deliveries.

However, try as they might the runs just didn’t come as bowler Andrew Robertson held his nerve to delight Colwall and break Redbourn hearts.