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Lapworth V BBC XI 2012

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Lapworth CC V BBC XI 2012

On Saturday 8th August 2012 the Melson hosted the annual Lapworth v BBC Midlands Today battle for the 'Golden Duck' trophy.

The match has become a regular annual fixture thanks to Ian Winter, the Midlands Today sports correspondent, being a Lapworth Cricket Club member!

Last year's fixture was won by BBC. With this clearly still fresh in their minds, Lapworth came out and played like a team seeking revenge and after 6 hours under glorious blue skies Lapworth pulled off a convincing victory to bring the Golden Duck trophy back to the Melson.

Batting first, Paul Comley got the hosts off to a flyer before falling just short of a half-century (47). He made way for Sean Troth, who continued the good work of Comley before he too was dismissed just 6 runs short of 50, edging through to the keeper. Dave Clark ensured Lapworth's innings didn't falter; his unbeaten 45 - aided by a late cameo from Tom Winter - guiding his side to a formidable 233 from 40 overs. Earlier, Mark Pratt failed to capitalise on what looked to be some good form when he was caught at deep point before the youngster, Reuben Arnold overcame a shaky start to strike 33 fluent runs, underlining his talent and impressing his fanbase in the process.

Lapworth felt content with their position at the tea interval and even more content with the quality of the coronation chicken sandwiches.

It looked like a tall order for the BBC boys, and this proved to be the case after the break when Tom Winter began steaming in, hitting the deck hard from the scorebox end. His opening partner, Shaun McCormick was equally threatening, consistently beating the edge with his teasing away swing.

BBC lost too many wickets in the first 20 overs to ever look like threatening the target, but the lower middle order dug in and made Lapworth fight for the last few wickets.

And fight they did. Boosted by the ever-inventive BBQ pun-sledging of James and Tom Drury in the slip cordon, Lapworth kept the pressure on their BBC opponents. Dan Clark bowled beautifully for someone so young and picked up two deserved wickets. Paul Stephenson and Tom Drury also did their bit to peg the opposition back and congratulations to Mr Comley on his first ever Lapworth wicket!

''Unstoppable force met immovable object''

A special mention must go to one over - the 15th - when their skipper, Ian Winter strolled to the crease with his side wobbling at 4 down. His son, Tom Winter, had bowled 7 overs; he had one more left. One crack at his old man...

Winter Senior took his guard. He rubbed his forearm across his brow. It was a hot day, but why so many beads of sweat for a man so new to the crease? Of course, the catalyst for his diaphoretic state was stood with ball in hand beyond the umpire - what must have seemed to Ian a million miles away - snorting and scraping his feet like an impatient bull.

With the spectators on the edge of their seats, the scene was set. We could all visualise it in the book:

I Winter ....... b T Winter ....... 0 (1b)

....6 balls later, Ian Winter was stood at the middle of the wicket, chatting with his batting partner, the look of a relieved man etched across his face - he had survived. Unstoppable force had met immovable object. It was a contest of epic proportions and in the end father had been able to withstand everything son could throw at him...

...until next year.

Thank you to the BBC Midlands Today team for a great game and a great day. Also thanks to all who came to watch and support the two sides - we hope you enjoyed the day as much as the players did!

We look forward to another battle in 2013!


Written by Sean Troth

Here are a few pictures from the day...