The usual end-of-year flurry of BUCS outdoor Cricket fixtures have taken place after a winter of indoor competition which saw UEA reach the semi-final of the BUCS Indoor Trophy, a game which they tied but lost on a technicality.
UEA still made the top 10 in the country, out of 103 teams. Last month UEA Cricket also went on a tour of Barbados where they played several matches and created good links.
It has been a successful few weeks for the men’s 1s, who have been doing superbly in their BUCS Midlands 3A league. Their campaign started with an impressive win away to Cambridge 1s. The hosts batted first, reaching 161 all out after 45 overs. UEA seamer Joseph Stairs took 5 wickets, Alex Lush dismissed 2, with Matthew Gibson, Brendan-James Smith and Sam Powell taking the other wickets.
After losing two early wickets (Alex Shanks and club President Harry Bailey) for 7-2, UEA steadied the ship and ended up made light work of their innings, reaching their target after 29 overs, for the loss of four. Dylan Grinker reached 49, and Jack Dudleston was UEA’s top scorer with 79 not out.
The next week, UEA were awarded a walkover against Anglia Ruskin who could not field a team, before a home defeat to unbeaten table-toppers Oxford Brookes 1s.
A ten-wicket victory away to Northampton kept UEA’s promotion hopes alive. Losing the toss, UEA were put into the field first, restricting the hosts to 125 all out. UEA’s openers saw them over the line, all-rounder Jake Lawrence with 85 not out and Dudleston with 26 not out.
UEA picked up another win in this week’s final league game against Birmingham 3s at Colney Lane. UEA’s openers started well and the scoring continued, with UEA setting the visitors an unassailable target of 262. UEA Captain Dudleston scored 82, Peter Trewick 40 and Shanks 39.
UEA’s outdoor team began their domestic season by winning their third Derby Day in a row in a tense final over with a six from South African Trewick. The club also reintroduced a second men’s team into BUCS competition this year for the first time in several years, with UEA 2s facing the likes of Trent 3s and Birmingham City 1s in the Midlands 4B league.
Elsewhere in UEA Cricket news, Concrete recently found out that last year marked the thirtieth anniversary of UEA’s run to the semi-finals of the national Universities Athletic Union cricket tournament, a precursor to BUCS. Steve Leven’s evocative account of that season, where UEA were eventually knocked out by a Durham team including future England legend Nasser Hussein, is well worth a read and can be found on UEA’s website here.