Devlin cracks stylish 64 at County Ground final

Greg Devlin
Greg Devlin

Hellingly lost the Under 18s final to Three Bridges under the floodlights at the County Ground.

Building themselves up for the biggest game of their lives so far, the Hellingly Under 18s side started their day with a team breakfast before setting off.

Taking the away changing room on arrival, the players got ready for the start.

Captain Ash Crocombe won the toss for Hellingly and elected to bat first on the best batting track of the season so far.

Tim Moses (1-21) struck early on for Three Bridges but Isaac Leckie and Greg Devlin built a solid partnership with some delightful shots which entertained the traveling fans.

The partnership came to an end on 86 when Matt Blandford bowled Leckie out for 34.

Conor Golding (2-31) and Blandford continued taking wickets but Devlin remained firm and brought up his 50 in style.

Devlin was eventually bowled out for 64 after hitting eight boundaries as he became victim number three for Blandford (3-37).

George Eaton added runs late on but the return of opening bowler Moses caused Hellingly’s lower order trouble.

Hellingly finished their 40 overs on 185-6 just as the floodlights came on.

After tea Hellingly took to the field, but failed to make an early breakthrough as Bradley Gayler and Conor Golding punished the bowlers.

Crocombe then brought himself into the attack and broke up the partnership on 87 as he caught Gayler for 48.

This brought Usman Khan to the crease who scored a quick-fire 18 before Will Hook held onto to a catch despite the glare from the lights.

Crocombe picked up a run out in the following over and when Matt Ball (2-46) picked up a wicket the very next ball, the Hellingly supporters began to feel that a victory was on the cards.

Golding, however, remained at the crease as he held the Three Bridges innings together and soon passed 50

Greg Devlin picked up a run out, but it proved to be Hellingly’s final wicket as Golding and Moses saw Three Bridges home to a five wicket victory, with Golding carrying his bat through the entire innings for a well deserved 66.

The after match presentation saw Three Bridges pick up their trophy and all the players received medals.