Bradninch Ladies’ captain Megan Acton took her team of 9 to Sidmouth’s Fortfield ground on Friday night, and left with the team’s greatest victory to date, writes Bryn Jones.
In the short life of the Ladies’ team so far, Bradninch have sparked up a good rivalry with Sidmouth. In BCC’s very first outing – the softball festival at Abbotskerswell, – Acton’s Eagles won 2 out of 3 games, their only defeat coming at the hands of Sidmouth. On Tuesday 15th of August, Bradninch then welcomed Sidmouth to the Kensham Club for a double-header that saw parity between the two sides. The 1-1 draw on Tuesday gave Bradninch their first taste of victory against a strong opposition, and it was one they looked to capitalise upon on Friday.
Winning the toss and choosing to bowl first in the 16 overs per side game, Bradninch got off to an incredible start. Opening the bowling, Abby Hayes claimed 2 wickets in 2 balls, clean bowled, to set Sidmouth back to -10 runs before anything had been scored off the bat. There were periods of the innings where Sidmouth showed signs of recovery, but our standard of fielding was just too good for the seasiders to cope with. Bradninch took every single catch that came their way in the field, a total of 5 were held by Meg Acton, Heather Stanbury, Autumn Sharp and Carrian Jones – the latter also claiming a brace of wickets from her 2 overs. A near faultless performance in the field, and regular wickets (which amount to -5 runs each) meant that Sidmouth finished their 16 overs only 35 runs in credit! Bradninch’s ground fielding was very well drilled, and there was a noticeable improvement on the number of wides bowled. The consistent improvement of the team as a fielding and bowling unit has been tremendous.
Acton sent out her opening pair of Sarah Stanbury and Paula Rovira, who quickly sent the bowling to all parts. Paula’s dominance with the bat was so effective that by the end of the pair’s 3 over stay at the crease, her individual score was 26!
This gave the rest of the team a real platform to play from and enjoy themselves. Enjoy themselves they did as Bradninch only lost 2 wickets in the remaining 14 overs, with every batter contributing runs. Skipper Megan Acton had a personal score over 20, including one six hit very powerfully over square leg. The real difference between the sides was shown in BCC’s match awareness, clear calling and running between the wickets. If a boundary wasn’t there to be hit, the girls were able to drop and run, rotating the strike. The Sharp sisters hit powerfully, and the pairing of Clark and Jones showed a good mixture of boundary hitting and quickly run singles. Every batter contributed, each batter finished with a positive aggregate of runs!
By the end of the innings, Bradninch finished on +115 (Only losing two wickets, so in effect scoring 125 runs) from their 16 overs. A huge winning margin of 80 runs! That win, along with wins for both the 1st and 2nd senior teams on Saturday meant a clean sweep for BCC over the weekend!
Acton’s Eagles head to Knightshayes tonight to play against their strongest opponents yet. The Tiverton side have been playing together for two seasons, but would be foolish to take Megan’s Ladies lightly! Action starts at 6.30pm.
Bradninch’s winning side were:
(Top Left to Right) Paula Rovira, Abby Hayes, Samantha Clark, Autumn Sharp, Sunny Sharp.
(Bottom Left to Right) Carrian Jones, Sarah Stanbury, Heather Stanbury, Megan Acton (Capt)