Rainhill into quarter-finals
Rainhill in Digman Trophy win over New Brighton
New Brighton 174-6 (Sebastian Botes 108, Dan Cooke 19; Sam Kershaw 3-23)
Rainhill 141-3 (Tyler McGladdery 76*, James Clarke 26; Ashley Watkins 1-25)
Rainhill beat New Brighton by 7 wickets (Duckworth-Lewis method)
Rainhill reached the quarter-finals of the Ray Digman Trophy following a seven-wicket win at home to New Brighton in a rain-affected match.
Rainhill put the visitors in to bat. Spinner Peter Kelly took the wickets of Ashley Watkins (10) and captain Adam Neal (8) but New Brighton's young opening batsman, Sebastian Botes, made a stunning century to help his team to a competitive target. Botes reached 108 from 102 balls - including 4 sixes - before he was eventually bowled by Ben Edmundson. His innings was remarkable in that he scored 63% of his team's total runs and succeeded in regularly finding the boundary while his team-mates found the going tough: no-one else managed to contribute more than 19. It was also his first century for New Brighton and comes just before he is due to sit his A-Levels. Botes showed maturity and more than a little ambition with his expansive strokeplay.
Sam Kershaw has contributed with the bat in recent matches, but on Sunday he excelled with the ball. He took 3 for 23 in five overs, dismissing Dan Cooke (caught and bowled for 19), Lewis Botes and Oliver Griffiths. These were his best-ever bowling figures and helped Rainhill limit New Brighton to 174 for 6. That wasn't a bad score, however - especially given the overnight rain. More rain was forecast and Rainhill were looking to score quickly from the outset to ensure they stayed ahead of the required run-rate should the weather intervene and the Duckworth-Lewis method need to be applied. James Clarke and Ben Edmundson (pictured) got out of the blocks playing some great shots, but were pegged back when captain Edmundson fell lbw to Sebastian Botes. Clarke played positively, amassing 26 from 28 deliveries, before Oliver Griffths found an edge that carried throught to wicketkeeper Neal.
Sam Kershaw was out quickly - lbw for 1 - and Rainhill were on 75 for 3. However, Tyler McGladdery, who has seemed invicible in cup matches so far this season, played a typical innings of 76 not out (from 85 balls) and was supported by Rob McKeown (19 not out) as they took the score on to 141 for 3 from 27.3 overs before the umpires called a halt to play due to the weather. Unfortunately, heavy rain meant that no further play was possible and Rainhill, comfortably ahead on the Duckworth-Lewis calculations, were through to the quarter-finals.
Umpires: Martin James, Norman Edwards Third umpire: David Crossley
Scorers: Andrew Finney, Josh Eastwood