COMBINED COLLEGES WIN LEAGUE
Combined Colleges (324-3 declared from 36 overs) beat Benalmadena (195-8 from 40 overs) by 129 runs
On a great day of Costa cricket, Combined Colleges Cricket Club won the Villa Espana Cricket League. The victory over Benalmadena was their third victory in three games and even if Colleges were to lose their last game against Campo CC at the end of November, they are still guaranteed a share in the League Title.
Colleges captain Brian Barrett yet again won the toss and decided to bat. This proved an excellent decision. Fernando Shrard continued his excellent form with the bat with an unbeaten 101 until he retired. Shrard’s batting average for the season is now 107. He shared a 200 opening stand with Chris Harris, who was out for 79 clean bowled by McIntosh when looking to push the run rate even higher. Third man in for Colleges was the ever impressive Cliff Knezovich – a man with a mission in life to keep his strike rate over 200%. After some exhilarating strokes which included 6 fours and 6 sixes in his 64, Knezovich was caught on the boundary ropes by an excellent catch. In the meantime, Colleges had suffered a minor collapse with Previn Menon falling for 3 lbw to Jason Linfield. Brian Barrett with a typically quickfire 38 not out and Mark Ward 11 not out saw Colleges declare with four overs remaining at 324 for 3 wickets.
Colleges started their bowling response with fire with the first three Benalmadena batsmen being sent back to the pavilion for ducks. However brave batting from Roger (32) and a century partnership by Robbo (24) and Johnny (77) allowed Benalmadena to close their innings on a respectable 195 for 8 off their 40 overs. Pick of the Colleges bowlers was again Mark Ward (8-0-22-3) with Roonie Bates (8-1-39-2), Brian Barrett (a miserly 8-2-15-1) and Luke Martinez (8-0-32-1) being the other wicket takers. Remarkably, Ward has now taken 10 wickets this season so far for only 73 runs at an average of 7.3.
If Combined Colleges win their final match on 28 November, they will win the League with a 100% record.