Saturday 1st August 2020
Surrey Championship Challenge Cup
Stoke D’Abernon 243 for 6 (40 overs)
Guildford 210 all out (37.4 overs)
Stoke D’Abernon won by 34 runs
On a glorious summer afternoon Stoke continued their great form of the last four seasons and secured a victory against a Guildford side who were ahead in the chase until an inspired fightback in the last hour.
Batting first having won the toss Tim Handel was an early departure for Stoke, but not after he hit the first ball he faced for six. Max Subba Row, (35), and Ian Hopton, (26), moved the score on nicely; but the latter’s loss to a run-out necessitated some rebuilding at 82 for 3.
This job was more than done by Will Gudgeon, who was in the original 2nd XI selection and made the most of his chance after a player withdrawal to make 51; acting captain Tom Frost, (25), and John Vaughan-Davies kept the board ticking.
Vaughan-Davies registered an unbeaten half-century, and the Stoke total was boosted to 243 after some pyrotechnics from Robbie Blackburn who smashed 24 off nine. 68 runs came off the last four overs.
In reply Guildford knocked 43 of the required runs off fairly quickly but Ben Townsend, (5-0-23-2), took out both openers to slow things down. Then it was a game of patience. Geffen, (57), and McMillan, (62), constructed a potentially match-winning partnership of 115 but things never got away from Stoke; then things changed very quickly just as the 3rd XI players arrived from their match to add to a sizeable socially distanced group of spectators.
Hopton took a good low return catch to remove Geffen, then effected the run-out of Teale in the next over. With Will Frost locking down the other end and the fielding keen the Guildford batsmen were forced into rash shot selection and poor running; three holed out on the line, one was stumped giving it the charge, another was run out and the last man castled by Hopton, (7.4-0-36-4), to end the contest with Stoke 33 runs to the good.
The last eight wickets fell for 40 runs…and the worm shows the huge turn of events…
Another great day in the Club’s history. World events may mean we are not be celebrating our 150th year in the way we planned, but the on-field performances coupled with the spirit of it are more than making up for this. Those who missed this one today missed a good one. To think, between 1994 and 2007 Stoke were in the lowest division of the Surrey County League, Guildford were a Surrey Championship Premier Club. This weekend the sides met on equal terms and Stoke once again produced the goods.
Next week the 1st XI travel to Normandy.