SPAIN CELEBRATE BELGIUM VICTORY
Spain in front of a vociferous home crowd, had eleven balls to spare as they passed Belgium’s 146-7 for the loss of only three wickets. J Savani’s 43 (five fours) had been the bedrock of the Belgian innings and Ben Taylor the home side’s most successful bowler, taking 2-36.
Needing five an over going into the last few overs, however, it looked as if Spain might fall short against this plucky and talented Belgian side, who used nine bowlers in an effort to break through the Spanish defences, but it turned out to be a perfectly-timed run chase that culminated with a mighty six pulled over mid-wicket by Matthew Smith.
Belgium’s bowlers, however, had performed admirably and were perhaps unlucky not to have enjoyed more success, several edges off the bowling of Sebastian Shukla and Savani just failing to go to hand in the first few overs.
On the top pitch, Cyprus took just one ball more than Spain to reach their target of 173, but had needed six an over at one stage as Gibraltar fought their way back into a match that had seemed over when George Papainisiforou and Alex McCarrick were leading Cyprus to 98 without loss.
A couple of wickets, however, had tilted the balance and when Papainisiforou was run out for a well-made 58 (the left-hander favouring the straight mid-wicket area in particular), nerves were jangling. David Bailey’s quickfire 16* though steadied the nerves and Cyprus eventually got home, winning by six wickets
- Belgium (0) lost to Spain (2) by 7 wickets.
La Manga Club, 27 August. [Scorecard]
Belgium 146-7 (35.0 overs, J Savani 43)
Spain 147-3 (33.1 overs)