Burns earns MOM honours
Tipton St John CC and old rivals Ottery St Mary enjoyed an entertaining and absorbing battle in a John Williamson- Associates sponsored match on Sunday.
Tipton St John CC and old rivals Ottery St Mary enjoyed an entertaining and absorbing battle in a John Williamson- Associates sponsored match on Sunday. The game was keenly fought but played in an excellent spirit, with Ottery finally winning by only nine runs.When home skipper David Birch lost the toss, Ottery's Tom Whittington's decision to bat first was cast in doubt as Birch and fellow opening bowler Paul Williamson denied Ottery many scoring opportunities and claimed a wicket each during 12 overs which yielded only 29 runs. The pressure was maintained by Mark Channon and Dave O'Higgins who both settled into an easy rhythm on a slow-paced pitch. Channon's delight at inducing an increasingly frustrated Faulkner to give an easy catch could be heard upriver in Ottery and, when he claimed a second wicket in his next over, Tipton were well on top with the visitors on 35-4.However, Tipton were not able to press home their advantage as Australian newcomer Brian Burns joined young Jack Pritchard to dig Ottery out of trouble. The pair gradually seized the initiative, putting on 76 for the fifth wicket and laying the foundation for an assault over the last 10 overs which yielded another 50 runs. Pritchard's 48 and Burns's 63, coming as it did after Channon had spurned a relatively straightforward caught and bowled, left Ottery in a strong position on 166, with Robin Pickering the pick of Tipton's bowlers with 3-31.Tipton's openers launched an immediate onslaught, with Phil Tolley in particular handing out brutal treatment to young off-spinner Duncan Bradshaw-Smith. Tolley (65 from 50 balls) and partner Justin Quick (25) raced to 85 from only 14 overs, when Tolley was bowled trying to pull a short ball from Will Harrison. Harrison then had Alec Pace lbw, playing no shot, while Burns's sharp and accurate off spin tied up the other end, once he had bowled Quick through the gate. Pickering batted sensibly for 29 not out but no one, apart from the belligerent Williamson, was able to lend any meaningful support. Whittington claimed 3 wickets as Tipton's innings finally foundered on 157, frustratingly but entertainingly close.The captains nominated Brian Burns as the first winner of this fixture's Man of the Match award, donated by Dave Jones: an engraved antique stump which possibly, and remarkably, even predates the playing careers of Tipton's senior luminaries, such as O'Higgins, Blackbeard and Williamson Sr.