posted by John Winn
The Village Cup reaches the group finals stage this Sunday, a round that will send 32 clubs through to the national stages from which eventually two will emerge to play at Lord's in September. Holders Sessay face a trip to the Filey area to take on Folkton and Flixton, currently mid table in the York and District League First Division. Closer to home for me the North Yorkshire (South) decider will be at Studley Royal where Staxton will be the visitors. Lying second in the Scarborough Beckett League, a competition of which I have little knowledge, Staxton seem a progressive outfit and this will probably be my match of the day. This good viewing ground allows watching from the car on cold days and is just west of Ripon.
In Scotland two big names shape up with Falkland facing Freuchie, two clubs who have visited North Yorkshire in the competition in recent years. This side of the border two County Durham sides meet , Sacriston from near Durham are at home to Wolviston, members of the NYSD. Group 5, West, South Yorks and Humberside has produced a local derby, East Ardsley v Streethouse, just a 10 mile journey for Streethouse.
Full fixtures are available at nvko.play-cricket.com with the exception of Group 27, Somerset and Avon but with a bit of digging this can be found at nationalvillagecup.com and features Stapleton v Timsbury. Looking through the other ties a number of clubs who can usually be counted on to reach the later stages catch the eye. Cleator from Cumbria, winners in 2013 are at home to Read, a Burnley club while Reed(sic) winners in 2012 will contest the Beds and Herts Group against Preston, a team from near Hitchin.
In East Sussex Glynde and Beddingham who won at Lord's in 2009 will host Mayfield and going even further back to 2001 and Ynystawe's victory, the Glamorgan side will travel to Tondu on Sunday. Other names to look out for are last year's losing finalists, Sibton Park who will visit the lovely ground at Linton Park to decide who will progress from Kent, Goatacre who I seem to mention every year crop up again in Dorset and Wilts with a home tie against Burbage and Easton Royal. Finally and for no particular reason other than it is a name that hardly trips off the tongue, in Herefordshire and Powys, Bartestree and Lugwardine go to Colwall, a well appointed ground which has hosted Herefordshire Minor Counties XI on occasions. This will actually be B and L's first game in the 2017 competition for disappointingly there were only three entries from this region and they received a bye. Let's hope all matches are contested this weekend.