CRICKET: Super Twyford leave title-chasers reeling

Twyford’s Bilal Afzad on his way to a fine 70 in their surprise five-wicket win against Division 1 high-fliers Cumnor on Saturday and (below) punching away a delivery from Jason Vardy

Twyford’s Bilal Afzad on his way to a fine 70 in their surprise five-wicket win against Division 1 high-fliers Cumnor on Saturday and (below) punching away a delivery from Jason Vardy

First published in Sport

Twyford continued their climb away from the Cherwell League Division 1 danger-zone with a shock five-wicket home win against title-chasers Cumnor.

With the two sides above them unable to complete their matches, a win would have moved the visitors into second place and within striking distance of the top.

After choosing to bat, they posted a respectable 198-7 in an innings reduced to 40 overs.

Callum Russell (47), Harry Ackland (45) and James Fitz-John (36) were all in the runs, while Jake Kubinek captured 3-33.

The hosts attacked the run chase with gusto, storming along at nearly seven runs an over in reaching 202-5 in the 31st.

Bilal Afzal led the way with 70, and was supported by Ben Elkington (38no), Shahid Mahmood (34) and Stafford Sansome (30).

Twyford 25pts, Cumnor 9

Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts found Paul White too hot to handle as they lost by six wickets at Abingdon Vale in Division 2.

On a day when the weather ruined many matches and forced others to be abandoned, Vale were one of only two winners in the division, and so moved up into mid-table.

Nondies won the toss and, after a delayed start, managed 136 before being bowled out off the final ball of the 40th over.

After a shaky opening, they rebuilt through Aadam Samiullah (35) and Christopher Day (31).

But former Oxon left-arm spinner White, who finished with 5-53, removed both to spark a collapse.

Vale had been bowled out for 88 when the sides met in May, so Nondies still had hope.

And they were back in it when Arfan Ahmed (3-47) took three quick wickets to leave the hosts in trouble on 33-3.

However, an 83-run partnership between skipper Charles Smook (59no) and the experienced Michael Howe-Davies (33) all but settled the issue, and despite a careless run out, Vale made it to 137-4 in the 24th over.

Nondies’ promotion hopes rem-ain alive, and Abingdon are not out of relegation trouble yet, but it is a reasonable bet that these sides will meet again at this level next summer.

Abingdon Vale 25pts, Oxford & Bletch Nondescripts 6

Bicester & North Oxford’s Division 3 home clash with Bletchley Town was wrecked by the wet weather.

The visitors were 51-4 in the 15th over after being asked to bat when heavy rain forced an abandonment.

Bicester & North Oxford 6, Bletchley Town 6 There was no play in the Di vision 2 match between and Twy-ford 2nd and Thame Town 2nd, each side taking six points.

Thame Town 2nd 6, Twyford 2nd 6

RESULTS

Division 1 Cumnor 198-7 (C Russell 47, H Ackland 45, J Fitz-John 36, J Kubinek 3-33), Twyford 202-5 (B Afzal 70, B Elkington 38no, S Mahmood 34, S Sansome 30).

Division 2

Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts 136 (A Sammiullah 35, C Day 31, P White 5-53), Abingdon Vale 137-4 (C Smook 59no, M Howe-Davies 33, A Ahmed 3-47) Division 3

Bletchley Town 51-4 v Bicester & North Oxford – abandoned.

Division 5

Twyford 2nd v Thame Town 2nd – abandoned.

Division 6

Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts 2nd v East Oxford 2nd – abandoned.

Division 7

Bletchley Town 2nd 179-3 (D Shepherd 91), Bicester & North Oxford 2nd 101-5 (C Weissang 3-19).

Division 10

Bicester & North Oxford 3rd v Dinton 3rd – abandoned.

Twyford 3rd v Cropredy 3rd – abandoned.

SATURDAY’S FIXTURES

Div 1: Thame Town v Twyford.

Div 2: Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts v Cublington.

Div 3: Banbury 3rd v Bicester & North Oxford.

Div 5: Twyford 2nd v Didcot 2nd.

Div 6: Great & Little Tew 3rd v Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts 2nd.

Div 7: Bicester & North Oxford 2nd v Sandford St Martin 2nd.

Div 10: Challow & Childrey 3rd v Bicester & North Oxford 3rd.

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