The first round of the Peter Blight Cup was notable for a shock defeat for Division 1 winners at the hands of 2nd Division Newton St Cyres. Bovey could justifiably feel a little aggrevieved at this reverse. Having had selection problems because of their own clubs AGM, and the need for their Devon skipper to be at Teignbridge Sports Personality awards, they arrived for their game to find only two of the opposition who had themselves suffered some communication difficulties. Bovey sportingly allowed the Saints time to get all their players to the centre, resulting in the game being reduced to 10 overs a side. The shortened game improved the underdogs chances, and they took full advantage.
Batting first Bovey reached an under par 90 from their 10 overs thanks to unbeaten scores of 27 from Jo Barrs and Chris Carter. No one else got in to double figures.The hero for Newton was the experienced Johnson who only conceded 13 runs in his 3 overs. In reply Newton relied on Church who batted through the innings for 25, and some handy pitching in from their other batters. They still needed 18 from the last over, bowled by Bovey skipper James Mason.The victory came with a single off the penultimate ball. An obviously disappointed Bovey skipper took the defeat in good part, refusing to blame the delay in starting for his teams defeat.
Newton will meet Division 2 champions Sandford in the first cup semi final. They proved too strong for Erratics, avenging last years defeat in the cup. Sandford batted first and amassed 119-4 with significant contributions from wicket keeping duo Chris Blake(28*) and Nigel Ashplant (24). Erratics reply never really got going, only opener Jonathan Kirby (20) hanging around for long. There were 2 stumpings for Ashplant and two wickets for keeper turned leggie, Blake.
The third game was a potential banana skin for Exeter who had drawn their young second string. With the score at 16-2 and Rob Holman and Mike Wilkinson both out, the seconds had hopes of springing a surprise. However the indoor specialist Richard Nelsey scored an impressive 57 and had support from George Greenaway (26*) and DaveRichardson (20*). The final total of 135 was significantly more than seemed likely at one stage. Jake Reddick with 18 from his three overs of leg spin was the most successful 2nds bowler. He also earned some money from older brother Sam for dismissing Devon batter Holman. Sam was the two's highest scorer in a respectable reply of 99-3, Steve Easterbrook 21* offering good support.
Shobrooke Park will be Exeter's opponents in the other cup semi final. They avenged two league defeats against Witheridge with a comprehensive 5 wicket victory. A below par Witheridge were dismissed for 66 in 11.5 overs with all the Park bowlers playing their part. Andrew Steer was most successful with 2 wickets. It only took Shobrooke 6.3 overs to reach their target. Justin Dollow 22, and Phil Anning 24* doing the damage.
The defeated teams go one to contest the Plate Competition. Bovey Tracey v Erratics and Exeter 2 v Witheridge.