Dumelow and Syddall destroy Shropshire

By Neil Goulding (Cheshire CCC press officer 07813 859986)

NATHAN Dumelow and Adam Syddall were Cheshire's stars as they closed in on a place in this year's MCCA Knockout Cup semi-finals with a convincing victory over Shropshire on Sunday.

Former Derbyshire all-rounder Dumelow crashed a superb 119 from 110 balls as Cheshire posted an imposing 260-7 from their 50 allotted overs, before left-arm seamer Syddall claimed four wickets as the home side triumphed by 108 runs.

And with just one round-robin Group A game remaining, Cheshire are now favourites to book their place in this year's showcase semi-finals on Sunday July 1st.

Hall's team lead the group by one point having taken five points from their first three matches, while Northumberland are second with four points.

Cheshire play Cumberland in their last group match on June 3rd, while Northumberland play Shropshire at Morda Road, Oswestry.

If Northumberland lose then Cheshire are guaranteed their place in the next round, although one point for Hall's men might just been enough having built up a commanding net run-rate on their arch-rivals.

Having won the toss at Christleton Cricket Club, Cheshire skipper Hall had not hesitation in batting first and was rewarded with some fine batting from Dumelow, who captains defending champions Oulton Park in The Right Move Abroad Cheshire County League ECB Premier Division.

Fellow club and county teammate Ben Spendlove (49) was also in the runs as Shropshire failed to contain the hosts.

But the best was yet to come as Bowdon's Syddall, who only made his county debut a few weeks ago, repaid the selectors' faith in him by dismantling Shropshire's batting line up.

Shropshire were never in the hunt and crumbled to 152 all out as Cheshire put one foot in this year's semi-final draw.

"It was an excellent team performance," praised skipper Hall. "Our batting put us in a strong position. Nathan keeps proving why he's such an important player for us, and then Adam did the damage with the ball. That was a great win for us.

"It's all down to the last game, but the pressure's on Northumberland because they've got to win. There's a few permutations, but if we win then we're be in the semi-finals."

Cheshire: 260-7 (50 overs) - N Dumelow 119, B Spendlove 49
Shropshire: 152 all out - A Syddall (four wickets)

Cheshire 12-man squad: capt - Andy Hall, wkt kpr - Matt Dawson (Bramhall); Ben Spendlove, Nathan Dumelow, Guy Emmett (Oulton Park); Ismail Dawood (Urmston); Chris Davies (New Brighton), James Duffy, Danny Woods, Tom Young (Hyde); Jason Whittaker (Walshaw); Adam Syddall (Bowdon). Scorer: Janet Herbert.

Cheshire's 2007 fixtures:
MCCA Knockout Cup (Final round-robin match) - June 3 v Cumberland @ Barrow.

MCCA Three-day Championship - June 10-12 v Devon @ Chester Boughton Hall; June 24-26 v Berkshire @ Finchampstead; July 8-10 v Dorset @ Dean Park; July 22-24 v Wiltshire @ Alderley Edge; August 5-7 v Oxfordshire @ Banbury; August 19-21 v Shropshire @ Nantwich.

Resource Bank Inter-County 20/20 Knockout - July 12 v Lashings, Shropshire and Staffordshire @ Wellington, Shropshire.