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Duffy gets his ton

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Duffy ton but Northumberland take the plaudits
MCCA KO Trophy (Group 3): Cheshire 205 all out (42.3 overs) lost to Northumberland 308-5 (42.3 overs) by 103 runs
By Jim Law

A sparkling 104 from skipper James Duffy in front of a bumper Hyde crowd went in vain as Cheshire fell to their third defeat in the MCCA KO Trophy.

Northumberland had earlier put the Cheshire bowlers to the sword as they built on a slow start to pile on 308-5 and join Cambridgeshire in the KO Trophy quarter finals.

Cheshire made three changes to their last Trophy match, bringing in left armer Danny Cranmer from Hyde and leg spinner Jack Williams from Chester Boughton Hall, both making their debuts. Johnny Kettle stepped down overnight with a finger injury which meant a call-up behind the stumps for Toft's Pat Roberts.

Rain earlier in the week gave Duffy food for thought after winning the toss but he eventually elected to field.

A cautious start saw the visitors reach 55 before Adam Syddall made the breakthrough, dismissing Samit Brarr for 19. However, a second wicket partnership of 196 between youngsters Danny Young (94) and Reece Carr (66) set the foundations for a decent total. Late quick-fire contributions of 54 and 50 not out from Jaques du Toit and skipper Adam Cragg further punished the bowlers, Syddall bagging the best figures of 3-69. There was a deserved wicket apiece too for the two debutants who briefly held up the onslaught with fine spells of controlled spin bowling. Both Cranmer and Williams finished with 1-47 from their 10 overs.

308-5 felt gettable on Hyde's small ground but early wickets soon put the pressure on as Cheshire's reply got underway. Only Warren Goodwin (27) offered any real support to a fine captain's innings of 104, fittingly made on Duffy's home ground. At 133-4, Cheshire were very much still in the chase but fell away to 205 all out in the 43rd over.

On a bitter sweet day for Duffy, he reflected on another under par performance from his side but picked out the positives of Cranmer and Williams' spells. 'We really didn't do ourselves justice across the whole campaign,' he admitted as he looks to prepare for the forthcoming three day Championship season. 'I'll be looking for an improvement across the board and can take the positives of two young spinners supporting Danny Woods as we go forward'.

Duffy's side open their three day 2013 Championship campaign against Oxfordshire at Great and Little Tew next Sunday (June 9) with the captain absent due to work commitments.

Danny Woods returns to skipper the side that also sees the return of Oulton Park's Rick Moore fresh from first team duty with Northamptonshire.

Cheshire side v Oxfordshire at Great and Little Tew, 11.00am, Sun - Tues June 9-11 2013:
W.M. Goodwin (Chester BH), J.P. Kettle (Nantwich), C.L. Tipper (Hyde), R.A.L Moore (Oulton Park), K. Sawas (Macclesfield),
D.O. Berry (Hyde), S.J. Kirwin (Hyde), J.J. Williams (Chester BH), D.P. Cranmer (Hyde), A.J. Syddall (Urmston), D.A. Woods (C) (York),
12th man P.M.R. Roberts (Toft)
Scorer: Mrs J. Herbert

MCCA KO Trophy - Final Table
PWLAPts
Cambridgeshire CCC
Northumberland CCC
Herefordshire CCC
Cumberland CCC
Cheshire CCC
4
4
4
4
4
3
3
2
1
0
1
1
2
2
3
0
0
0
1
1
6
6
4
3
1