Strong Ampthill team crush Biggleswade’s Heritage hopes

Heritage Cup winners Ampthill. Picture: Derrick Stock
Heritage Cup winners Ampthill. Picture: Derrick Stock

Biggleswade’s bid to win the Heritage Cup fell to a strong Ampthill side by eight wickets on Friday.

Biggleswade had done well to reach the final for the first time since 2008 when, ironically, they also faced Ampthill at Potton.

Skipper Joe Randall won the toss and opted to bat first. Biggleswade made a steady start but lost early wickets leaving Biggleswade 56- 5.

Harry Roberts and Matt Twigg (27) moved the innings on and ensured that the side passed 100. The last wicket fell in the final over leaving Biggleswade on 104.

That was always likely to be an insufficient target against Ampthill, who play regularly in higher standard leagues. Biggleswade fielded well and did pick up an early wicket, removing Nick Barden for eight.

However, Bryan Lewin and Tom Degnan then shared a partnership of 87. Lewin was out for 45 attempting to hit the winning runs, but Degnan was unbeaten on 40 as Ampthill reached their target in the 13th over.

On Saturday a depleted side travelled to Upwood for their Hunts League Div 1 clash.

Put into bat, Biggleswade immediately lost Dagless but Ahmad and Twigg then moved the innings on nicely. Ahmad fell for 36 but Twigg then received good support from Gauge and Manthorp.

Once those two were out wickets fell regularly – Twigg though went on to his century and was finally removed lbw for 103. Ball added 20 as Biggleswade posted a total of 236.

The Upwood innings saw a similar start as Drage was removed for four before Grange and Tiffin moved the score on.

Unfortunately for the visitors that was where the similarity ended as they had come across an inspired batsman in Tiffin. He made an unbeaten 136 and he and Newman (50 not out) saw Upwood home for an eight-wicket win.

Biggleswade squeezed home with six balls to spare at a sweltering Great Brickhill in the Beds County League on Sunday.

They were hampered by the loss of bowler Gauge, removed from the attack in the first over. After this Dagless and Ditcham bowled tight spells and restricted Brickhill to 20 runs from the next 10 overs. Roberts then came on and bowled opener Pattni.

John and Javed added 71 for the second wicket. Smith brought himself on and broke the partnership, catching John off his own delivery.

With just six overs left Brickhill began to chase runs and wickets began to fall. The innings ended in the 45th over for 232 when Randall stumped Fayyaz off Ditcham.

The Biggleswade reply started in a rush with Wright and Randall taking the score to 80 after 10 overs. The introduction of the spinners saw Biggleswade reduced to 119- 4. Boyd came and went, stumped off Miah, which brought youngster Roberts in to join his skipper.

For the second time in the match, Biggleswade held their nerve. Smith departed with the score on 179 in the 36th over. Larter joined Roberts and the pair of them managed the run chase very well indeed.

In County League Division Four bottom side Biggleswade IIs hosted league leaders Elstow on Sunday and the visitors’ class told as they ran out winners at Fairfield. Biggleswade lost opener Birch early but then had a stand of 30 between Twigg and Garwood. Once Twigg departed the side were shot out for 50.

Elstow cruised to their target in seven overs.