Uphill Castle 270 Wellington 273-6 There could not have been a more fitting way for Wellington skipper Paul Short to bring the curtain down on his six seasons as 1st XI Captain than with this fine run chase at Uphill Castle last weekend as the Red and Blacks secured an excellent third placed finish in the Somerset Division of the West of England Premier League where he played a guiding hand of 76no as a twelfth win in seventeen completed games was secured.
On a glorious day the minibus with team and supporters set sail from Wellington and they arrived at Uphill to find a well tailored wicket and fast outfield on offer and it was the Weston Super Mare based side who opted to bat first on winning the toss and they batted well throughout their 50 overs without anyone really going on to a big score as A.Winn with 54 top scored for Uphill.
Wellington found spin to be their most potent weapon as Paul Short delivered three good spells of off spin to take 2-45 and Rob Moysey was in the wickets too with 1-40 in 10 overs on a day when seam was not in vogue.
Max Capaldi with 2-53 in 10 overs was the third spinner to be used by Wellington and although pace was not the potent force Luke Desave came back to take 4-49 in 1o overs as Uphill lost their last four wickets for just one run with four balls left, but 270 was still a fine effort.
Wellington lost Charlie Davies in the first over, but rallied through Sam Murdock and Alex Sparks – who had made 170no in the game at Wellington – as they added 35 second wicket runs before Murdock was caught behind.
Sparks was timing the ball well, but when he was LBW for 29 Wellington were 41-3 and going nowhere really.
The game was turned on its head by Max Capaldi and Paul Short who added 79 for the fourth wicket with Capaldi playing a capital knock of 44, but when he was out and a fifth wicket fell too at 127-5 Wellington were at the half way point in their innings and needed a lot of runs, but through a fine attacking knock of 78 from Indika Weerwarna and skipper Short anchoring matters Wellington’s confidence grew and Uphill’s seeped away; they added 102 for the sixth wicket and this was the boost Wellington needed.
Short and Scott Davey – who has had a fine season – saw Wellington over the line with eight balls to spare with the captain on 76no and Davey on 15no to see Wellington to third place – their best ever league finish.
Seconds and Thirds miss out on a match
In complete contrast to their 1st XI colleagues who had a fine day out at Uphill Castle Wellington 2nd XI were left with no game when their scheduled Somerset League Division Three opponents Horrington – from Wells – cried off at 11.15am on the day of the match. If this was not bad enough when news that their 2nd XI were playing their home game in the League’s Division 8N filtered through the matter was referred to the League as the rule that a Club’s most senior fixture must be fulfilled had been broken.
Wellington 3rd XI are the champions of Somerset League Division 9NW for 2013 after they secured the divisional title through their scheduled opponents Huntspill and District 2nd XI not being able to raise a side last weekend. Des Campbell’s team won 12 out of their 16 games in 2013 and lost just twice and this is a fine achievement in the first season that the Club has ever run three Saturday sides. They will play in one of the League’s Division 8s in 2014; a part of the League that is still played on a regional basis.
Sunday team leading the league
Wellington Sunday XI are leading Division A of the Taunton and District Sunday League following this five run win at Chard last weekend, but will probably have to settle for runners up spot to Bridgwater as they need just seven points from their home game with Chard next weekend to retain the title.
Wellington collected 22 points from this game and it was a close run thing as Chard – relegated to Division B for next season – came to within an ace of winning the game off the last ball.
Wellington had batted first on winning the toss and Aks Latifi and Ben Evett added 35 runs first up before Latifi was stumped for 20.
Evett made a personal best score of 46 and was closing in on a debut fifty when Hurley took a one handed catch on the boundary to deny him.
Charlie Davies made a fine 103 and Wellington’s middle and lower order all chipped in with Luke Desave’s 15no getting the Red and Blacks to 246-8 at tea.
Chard’s innings started awfully as Macaulay Campbell and Max Capaldi reduced them to 5-3, but Wellington took just one more wicket all innings as Mawdsley with 91, J.Scott with 91no and R.Scott with 32no got Chard mighty close to the win and had Arron Campbell not bowled Mawdsley when he did the home side may well have won with a bit to spare, but George Hooper’s fine seven over spell was a controlled and well delivered effort as was Rob Moysey’s leg spin offering and Luke Desave kept his nerve to deliver a dot ball last ball as J.Scott was eyeing up a leg side six to win.
This has been a good Sunday League season for Wellington and runners up spot is a good effort, but they will rue losing at Wembdon last month as if that match had been won then the title may just have been secured after winning at Bridgwater and here at Chard.
Match reports: David Derrick