After a frustrating weekend when I saw only thirty minutes cricket the weather and the York Senior League Cup Final came to my rescue and provided me with an excellent afternoon's entertainment at Clifton Alliance CC yesterday. . Some of the credit should also go to Twitter for it was through social media that I was alerted to the fixture in plenty of time to make my way this lovely ground (above) for the 1:00 start.
The sides involved yesterday were Easingwold, beaten finalists in 2013 and Studley Royal, winners in 2014. Studley, thought to be weak in bowling batted first and after the loss of an early wicket posted a total that, judging by their body language, Easingwold felt was beyond their reach.. The damage was done by a second wicket stand between Rob Mackle, 108, and James Clarkson 83 and the frequent boundaries were enjoyed by most of the good sized crowd that had gathered in the sunshine. 277 for 4 was the forty over total.
If Easingwold were to have any hope of getting near such a target they needed a good start but the loss of early wickets and a run rate that stuck at about two an over did not fit the bill. The idea that Studley's attack might not be up to scratch was not supported by the evidence and although a couple of difficult chances were spilled the fielding generally was good. Easingwold had some hope while Paul Skilbeck was at the crease but when he went for 52 the end was nigh and I set off for home. 170 all out suggests there was some tail end resistance but a winning margin of 107 runs, the widest in recent years, accurately decribes Studley's superiority. Charlie Scatchard was Royal's hero with the ball taking 6 for 32.
Thanks to Clifton Alliance for hosting the game and providing such a lovely spread at tea. They currently stand top of the York League Premier Division with two matches left to play and with a good advantage over Sessay who are third. If promoted to Yorkshire Premier (North) then their local derby will be against York CC, two grounds separated by the width of a rugby pitch, doesn't get much more local than that.
Throughout the afternoon I enjoyed the company of Stephen from Starbeck, a fount of knowledge of league cricket in this part of North Yorkshire, and who next Sunday will travel with Sessay CC to Lord's for the village cup final. Enjoy.