Oxfordshire 156 (20 overs), Cheshire136 (19.3 overs). Oxfordshire won by 20 runs
Cheshire bowed out of the 2022 T20 Final's Day at Tring with a 20 run loss to Oxfordshire. Ollie Currill takes spectacular 7-12.
Chasing 156 and in the driving seat for most of the innings, Nick Anderson's side couldn't maintain their early momentum and slipped to a disappointing defeat having looked such a strong outfit throughout the nine games.
On a bright morning, Anderson won the toss and chose to bowl against the side Cheshire had spectacuarly defeated in the T20 final seven years ago.
In search of some early moisture and a little something for the bowlers, Cheshire kept things tight with one of the dangermen - Harrison Ward - first to go with the score on 20. Ollie Price topped scored in the innings with 30 as Cheshire chipped away and at 127-7, Oxfordshire were struggling.
Closing at 156 all out felt under par and could have been worse with Cheshire's fielding maybe not quite as sharp as recent games.
Andy Jackson took 3-37 while Jack Williams and Stephen Green both pivotal in slowing things down mid-innings, each took 2-27. There was 2-30 for Anderson and a wicket for Michael Finan who again looked to be bowling with real pace,
It seemed lbusiness as usual for Cheshire when the reply got underway, Rob Sehmi and Sam Perry in control, rotating the strike well and moving things along quickly.
40 soon came round before Perry holed out - the first of Currill's victims. Sehmi followed soon after for 29 as Charles Lowen (17) and Will Evans (26) took over.
By now Currill was really enjoying himself but with with eight overs left on 105-3, Cheshire were clear favourirtes.
But wickets kept falling and the momentum fell away. Alex Money (14) took control but perished as the challenge mounted and with Currill sweeping up, it wasn't to be Cheshire's day.
"The most disappointing thing was the fact that we really let things slip," said team manager, Pete Babbage. "We let ourselves down because we know how strong a side we are. We let Oxfordshire get out of jail somehow and we've only got ourselves to blame.
"Let's remember though how far Nick Anderson's brought this side . We've used just 13 players across nine games and had to re-group late this week when we lost Harry Dearden. He's a great influence on and off the field..
"All that said, well done to Curril on some great figures."
Onwards for Cheshire as they now move into the 50 over KO Trophy competition. Four games, starting with Cambridgeshire next Sunday at Exnning Park.