Wellington dig deep to end a testing summer on a high

Wellington’s resilience was evident again as they ended the Shropshire County Cricket League season by claiming the top-flight spoils.

Quatt batting against Wellington
Quatt batting against Wellington

The Orleton Park outfit dug in to secure a four-wicket success against Quatt in the Premier Division’s grand final.

Both sides had breezed through their respective groups with nine wins from 10 games to reach the shootout for silverware, which took place at Worfield.

And it was Wellington who came out on top in a keenly-contested final.

They had appeared to be in a spot of bother when they were reduced to 74-6 chasing Quatt’s total of 153-8.

But finding a way to win from testing positions has been a constant theme for Wellington this season and that was the case again as Matthew Lamb (39 not out) and Ben Byram (30 not out) then joined forces to see them to victory without any further alarms.

“We started well and were 40-0, but then lost a few wickets and found ourselves 74-6,” said coach Ross Edwards. “But one of the features of our performances this season has been winning from tricky positions. We were 29-6 in the first game of the season against Whitchurch and went on to win.

“We bat very deep and different players have stepped up and won games for us and that was the case with Matthew Lamb and Ben Byram on Saturday.

“They batted very well and got us over the line. It’s nice to have that depth in your batting.”

Quatt had found runs hard to come by after being asked to bat first and were struggling at 72-7.

But skipper Craig Jones and Ryan Wheldon shared a 43-run stand for the eighth wicket with Jones then going on to make a valuable 43 not out as his side posted 153-8.

Wellington spinners Wendell Wagner (2-12) and Dan Lloyd (1-17) proved especially difficult to get away as they got through 18 impressive overs. There were also two wickets for Tom Ellis.

“We would have settled for keeping them down to 150-odd before the start, but after we had them 72-7 they probably got 30 more than we would have liked,” added Edwards.

“There was a little bit of variable bounce which mad it difficult for the batsmen.

“But you would expect the odd ball to misbehave in September.

“But sometimes you have to pay credit to the batters and Ryan Wheldon and Craig Jones batted really well to get them up to that total.

“It was more a case of good, sensible battling as opposed to bad bowling.

“We bowled well, especially our two spinners Dan Lloyd and Wendell Wagner.”

Now Edwards can start planning for next year and, hopefully, a full summer of cricket.

“We knew the main prize of winning promotion to the Birmingham League wasn’t there, but it was good to play some competitive cricket and nice to win what was on offer,” added Edwards.

“And it sets us up for next summer when promotion will hopefully be back on the agenda.

“To be honest, we didn’t think we would be playing any meaningful cricket, so credit must be given to the league for coming up with a format that provided good, competitive cricket.”

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