At last - an east Suffolk side in the EAPL
AT LAST! There will be an east Suffolk side in the Gibbs Denley East Anglian Premier League for the first time ever next season.
Copdock & Old Ipswichians defeated Cambridgeshire side Ramsey by 111 runs in Saturday’s promotion play-off to become the first side from the east of the county to take their place in the EAPL since the league’s formation in 1999.
They will join Suffolk sides Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury in the EAPL next season and, along with Clacton and Halstead, there will now be five former Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship clubs among the 12 sides in the competition.
Copdock extended their winning sequence to 16 matches - 14 league games and two play-off matches - stretching back to May 28 thanks to a comprehensive victory over the Tucker Gardner Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire League winners.
Adrian Nel led the way in an opening stand of 133 with Archie Gravell, who made 33, before falling just three short of a century. Jed Cawkwell (57) and skipper Chris Swallow (64) then added 101 for the fourth wicket as Copdock piled up the runs, closing on 303 for six from their 50 overs.
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Although Ramsey were up with the run rate early in their innings, Swallow took five for 35 as they were dismissed for 192 in 41.4 overs.
Swallow described Saturday as “my best day’s club cricket ever” and continued: “They won the toss and chose to bowl, which was ideal for us as we would have batted first. Adrian (Nel) has opened for our Sunday side in the PiriPiri League all summer, but we only started using him as an opener for us about a month ago. He bats very aggressively and played brilliantly and took the game away from them as he laid the foundations of our innings.
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“Jed (Cawkwell) rotated the strike well which allowed Hugh Thomas and myself to hit out. When you have got 300 runs it is usually a winning score, and on that pitch we thought we should be okay. Their overseas player (South African Travis Townsend) batted well, but we chipped away and worked our way through their order.”
Off spinner Swallow, who has taken more than 100 Minor Counties Championship wickets for Suffolk, said: “I have been working on my bowling a fair bit and it has been coming out of the hand well, and if they miss I back myself to hit.”
The 29-year-old revealed how Copdock had turned their season around after losing at Mildenhall, who they pipped by just two points for the title.
“We were disappointed with the way we played when we lost at Mildenhall and sat down and talked about it and knew that we needed to move on. We have carried that forward and we have really gelled well as a team and played well as a unit. This has helped us to win some tight games that in the past we would not have won.”
Looking ahead to next season Swallow, who rejoined Copdock five years ago after playing in the EAPL for Clacton, said: “We will need to add a couple of players to our squad, but the biggest challenge will be going from 50-over cricket to playing all-day cricket, and learning that you can draw games even if you can’t win them. But once we get up to speed with that I think we will be okay.”
Copdock & Old Ipswichians: A Gravell b West 33, A Nel run out 97, R Sharp c Rippington b West 1, J Cawkwell b Kay 57, C Swallow c Clarke b Kay 64, H Thomas not out 17, A Raj run out 2, T Jenkin not out 0. Extras 32. Total (for 6 wkts, off 50 overs) 303.
Fall: 1-133, 2-156, 3-171, 4-272, 5-292, 6-299.
Bowling: M Kay 10-0-62-2; O Verrall 10-1-47-0; T West 10-0-56-2; M Cafferkey 10-0-54-0; M Edwards 1-0-12-0; T Townsend 7-0-45-0; S Rippington 2-0-16-0.
Ramsey: D Clark c Gravell b James East 28, M Cafferkey b Nel 43, S Cafferkey b Swallow 3, T Townsend c Cawkwell b Swallow 50, J Markland c James East b John East 7, T West run out 20, E Cafferkey lbw b Swallow 5, M Edwards st Thomas b Swallow 4, S Rippington c & b Jenkin 5, M Kay b Swallow 3, O Verrall not out 10. Extras 14. Total (off 41.4 overs) 192.
Fall: 1-58, 2-67, 3-99, 4-126, 5-150, 6-167, 7-167, 8-178, 9-182, 10-192.
Bowling: James East 7-0-32-1; T Jenkin 9-1-52-1; C Swallow 9.4-0-35-5; John East 10-0-39-1; A Nel 6-0-24-1.