Jamie Crawley gets his ton
The record partnership
A double ton for Furqan Shafiq

A win at last as Woods bows out and records go tumbling

By Jim Law

Cheshire CCC v Herefordshire CCC at Alderley Edge CC, 2,3,4 September 2018

Cheshire spinner Danny Woods calls it a day
and it's a record 339 partnership for Furqan Shafiq and Jamie Crawley

Cheshire 502-8 dec, Herefordshire 205 & 137.
Cheshire won by an innings and 160 runs.

Buoyed by winning the KO Trophy last week, Cheshire won their final three day Championship game against Herefordshire at a canter.

Furqan Shafiq hit 207 and Jamie Crawley 173 as Cheshire added broke the fourth wicket partnership record for both County and for minor counties cricket.

Having been on the verge of victory and failed at the last stage in three previous games, Cheshire rounded off their 2018 season to finish fifth in the MCCA Western Division.

This was a comprehensive win with several milestones and concluded a successful all-round season for the Club.

Cheshire's first innings total of 502-8 declared included a stunning 339 wicket partnerships as youngsters Furqan Shafiq and Jamie Crawley took complete control.

Scoring at blistering pace and each in their own style, they smashed the previous fourth wicket partnership for league and county in an outstanding display of craftmanship.

Rick Moore had struck 52 before the fireworks and Chester recovered from a shaky start to put themselves in an unassailable position.

Danny Woods - who announced his county retirement before the game - then took 3-66 with the emerging Simon Normanton grabbing 3-47 and Moore, who has been in fine form this season, 3-42. Herefordshire closed on 205 (Jamie McIlroy 68).

Following on, Herefordshire's second innings was a similar story with only Tom Cummins (49) putting up strong resistance.

This time round Normanton took 5-43 to end with match figures of 8-90.

Cheshire won by an innings and 160 runs to leave skipper Danny Leech purring.

"Furqan and Jamie's innings partnership was incredible," he said. "We witnessed one of those special afternoons of cricket. The two were working together and barely gave a chance. It may be a long time before we see something that takes your breath away quite like that.

"Simon Normanton has pitched up this year and taken the bull by the horns. After his fireworks in the cup final last week, he just continued where he'd left off.

"As for Danny Woods, he's irreplaceable. Normanton has learnt a lot from him this season and he's been a credit to the County since he made his debut in 2006. Learning his trade alongside senior pro's, Danny has got to the top of the ladder in our game. The esteem he's held in around the country is testament to his quality and reassuring nature. We wish him well in the future and he'll continue terrorising batsmen in Yorkshire."

Woods' stats speak for themselves. In the Championship alone, since 2006 he's taken 261 wickets at an average of 19.81. In 53 matches he's taken five wickets on 21 occasions.

Not surprisingly Woods' (with 30 wickets in four games this season) was named Cheshire bowler of the year with Furqan Shafiq (520 runs in six games @ 52) taking the batsman's title. Calum Rowe was fielder of the year and the annual Sandy Scrimgeour Memorial Award went to Simon Normanton for his outstanding contribution across the season.

"A one-day trophy masterminded by Rick Moore, a T20 final, the emergence of some great looking youngsters, the experience of the likes of Rick, Calum Rowe and Wayne White and some great camaraderie bodes well for 2019," was how Danny Leech summed it up.


This was the team

Western Division Final Table

Batsman of the year:
Furqan Shafiq
Bowler of the year:
Danny Woods
Fielder of the year:
Calum Rowe
Sandy Scrimgeour Award:
Simon Normanton