Championes, Championes, Olé Olé Olé!

It is with great pleasure and pride, that I can declare the Stalybridge St. Paul’s Cricket Club 1st XI as Champions of Division 3 of the Derbyshire and Cheshire Cricket League.

With only one more game left in the season, after yesterday’s rained off fixture against Pott Shrigley, and 2nd place Birch Vale game against Chapel-en-le-Frith also rained off, it leaves us with enough points, should we lose to Birch Vale in the final fixture of the season without earning a point, to ensure our place at the top of the table as champions.

Well done to everyone involved, the lads went out for a celebratory ‘couple’ of drinks last night, but the main celebrations take place next Saturday, for the end of season presentations and race-night.

If you want to come along, please send me a message on o792o o56659, so we can add you to the list.

[Week 6] Stalybridge St Paul’s vs Offerton

Stalybridge St Paul’s hosted Offerton on Saturday hoping to pick up from their previous home win.

Having lost the toss and being invited to bat, openers Adam Harwick and Daniel Collins soon set about the bowling as they gave Stalybridge a solid start with a 69 partnership. Following the demise of Harwick (40) and Collins (35), a typical Stalybridge mid-order collapse ensued with only Khalid Akram (26) getting into double figure. No. 9 Mike Mallett ensured Stalybridge passed 200 however with some powerful hitting, as he smashed 52 not out, meaning the target was set at 218 to win.

Mallett picked up where he had left off with the bat by picking up 4 wickets, as Offerton limped to 61 all out.

Stalybridge 2nds also picked up a 4 wicket win at Offerton to jump up a few places in the table. Muddy Bashir finishing with 5 wickets.

This week Stalybridge travel to Chapel-en-le-Frith with the 2s hosting the same opposition. 2nds then travel to New Mills in the cup on Sunday.

[Week 4] Stalybridge St Paul’s 1st XI vs Charlesworth

Stalybridge St. Paul's CC 1st XIStalybridge St Paul’s finally had their first home game of the season on Saturday as they entertained Charlesworth.

Having won the toss again, an easy decision was made to bat first, with the wicket and ground looking as good as ever, as Stalybridge hoped to continue their slow improvement of form with the bat.

Adam Harwick answered the call for somebody to ‘stick-around’ as he produced a very steady 56 opening up, with most others chipping in around him. Khalid Akram (23) and Mike Mallett (27 not out) helping out to allow Stalybridge to set 175 for 7, a tricky but certainly chaseable total.

Charlesworth’s reply got off to the worse possible start as they were soon 1 for 3 and 27 for 5. A couple of healthy partnerships however left them still in the game, and even looked favourites at one point as batters 8 and 9 nudged the score to 140. However, a couple of late James Brady wickets meant Charlesworth fell just 8 runs short. Brady eventually finishing with 4 for 43.

Stalybridge 2nds fell to a heavy defeat away at Compstall.

This Saturday sees the 1sts  visit Birch Vale looking to avenge the cup defeat with the 2nds hosting the same opposition.

[Week 3] Stalybridge St Paul’s 1st XI vs Woodley and Birch Vale

Stalybridge St. Paul's CC 1st XIStalybridge St Paul’s made the short trip to Woodley on Saturday as the weather finally allowed for a guaranteed game.

Having won the toss and elected to bat, regular wickets fell all through the innings as Stalybridge’s shot selection left a lot to be desired. Only a brief Rob Mallett blast of 22 managed to nudge the score past hundred, which left Stalybridge with only a glimmer of hope.

A few early-innings wicket in Woodley’s reply showed a bit of fight but 105 was way too low a total as Woodley passed their target with 4 wickets down.

1st XI vs Birch Vale CC – 8th May 2016

On Sunday, Stalybridge then travelled to Birch Vale in the first round of the cup. A more-spirited batting display meant Stalybridge set 153, with opener Harwick (26), Barnes (20), and a 50 partnership between Brownhill (23) and Mike Mallett (27).

In reply, Stalybridge had Birch Vale struggling at 60 for 5, Gary Sandiford standing out with 3 quick wickets. Vale’s two veteran batters then got together however and pushed the run-rate up to expertly guide them to victory in a game that looked like it was going to be very tight at drinks. Another defeat but certainly positive signs as Stalybridge slowly get into the swing of things.

In contrast. Stalybridge 2nds showed the 1sts how it was done with 2 victories, over Buxworth on Saturday and Birch Vale on Sunday. Ant Hunter scoring 33, veteran Pete Coxon and Bashir picked up 3 wickets each. This was followed by another comprehensive victory in the cup on Sunday. This time Coxon picked up 4 wickets with Chris Gledhill also chipping in with 4 including a 3 wicket maiden.

This Saturday sees the 1st finally at home vs Charlesworth, with the 2nds travelling to Compstall. 1.30 start.