With the 2nd and 3rd team gallantly fulfilling their fixtures against Trysull and Siesdon Cricket club, support for the Green and Golds was a little sparce, unlike their counterparts who came fully prepared with their partisan crowd who were determind to have a great time whatever the outcome.
Quatt made one change from the previous win over Geddington, with the evergreen Adam Evans coming in for the unavailable Matthew Fleming. Northrop skipper Chris Brookes won the toss and invited ‘The Cidermen’ to have the first knock on a good looking Quatt wicket.
From the start, the inform opening pair of Adrian Evans and Nathan Hakeman started briskly. Evans in particular took a liking to the inconsistent lengths of opening bowler Lloyd Hayes with Hayes 2nd over going for 17. With Hakeman playing a more responsible role the pair reached a solid 58 off the first 10 overs. Evans passing his 50 in the 16th over, was looking imperious to record his first 100 in this tournament. However, it was not to be as he mis pulled a Heauflish long hop to deap square leg for a fantastic 65 leaving the hosts a 112 for 1 off twenty overs.
This brough to the wicket, captain Craig Jones, who typically kept the scoreboard ticking over from ball one. Hakeman brought up yet another 50, before taking a suicidal single to be run out for the second time of the weekend. With David Street at the wicket, Quatt were looking to push forward to an imposing total. Jones eventually went in the 36th over for a run a ball 40.
By now Street was seeing the ball well and smashed the last over for 18, which included two massive maximums, leaving Street on 48 not out. Quatts innings ended on 228 for 4, a total that probably was around par.
With the ‘Special Cider’ now starting to take effect on the crowd, Quatt knew that they needed an early breakthrough to restrict their talented young opposition. Enter the oldest ‘swinger’ in town Barry Jones, who dismissed the dangerous Darren Williams with a regulation catch to 1st slip. The partnership of Hayes and Andy Poynton was becoming a concern with Hayes in particular playing some very positive cricket. With Quatt needing a breakthrough, Gareth Jones produced one of the finest overs of his life, as he removed Poynton caught at mid off by Jim Williamson, Hayes caught by a remarkable catch by Craig Jones and trapping the unfortunate Walker leg before. This over left the visitors 64 for four after 14 overs, and Quatt looked well in the driving seat.
This was affirmed when Hakeman produced a smart bit of stumping to combine with Craig Jones to dismiss Folkes. As is typical of this tournament, Northrop refused to lie down, and the partnership of Brookes and Allman typified their fighting spirit. The pairs running between the wickets was a positive feature until Brookes called a ridiculous single which left him three yards shorts. With 96 required off 12 overs, the game seemed beyond the Welsh side. Unfortunetly for Quatt, Mark Poynton had not read the script, and along with Allman took the asking rate from above 8 to below 5 and a half an over.
With time running out, Craig Jones threw the ball to his ever reliable cousin, Gareth. He immediately repayed the faith by removing Allman, caught and bowled for a fine 46. With the pressure now firmly on Poyton, he lost another partner in Gary Williams before being caught off a skyer by Craig Jones leaving Gareth Jones the impeccable figures of 6 for 36 off 9 overs. With 25 needed off the last three overs, Jones turned to his farther Barry, who with fine death bowling trapped the brave Harry Lewis LBW to leaving Northop 24 runs short of the target. The game was a fine example of why the Village Knockout is held in high regard by many village clubs throughout England, Scotland and Wales.