T20 Cup quarter-final: Sunbury vs Walton
By Oliver Clarke
Eventual progression for the Swans to a first ever finals day
For the second year running, Walton visited upriver rivals Sunbury for a T20 quarter-final, with the prize a place in Finals Day at Ashford. Walton won the toss and batted first on a warm evening at Kenton Court Meadow. Chohan and Campbell were to open the batting against a strong looking Sunbury side that contained Surrey's Virdi, Middlesex's Andersson and many other seasoned Premier League players.
The match began in belligerent fashion, with words flying around and Campbell, in particular, stroking the ball to the boundary with glorious ease. There is always value for shots at Sunbury, and the classy Campbell had reached 35 by the time the equally classy Virdi removed him bowled in the fifth over.
Chohan's more brutalist hitting style had helped the side to 57 by the end of the powerplay, but as spin was introduced from both ends, Sunbury took control and several poor strokes saw wickets tumble - largely aerially - to spinners Hughes, Singh and indeed Virdi. With Walton's early momentum gone, it was left to the battling pair of Mann and Paul Bainbridge to urge Walton past three figures, which they did with the final score a respectable, but probably not competitive, 119.
The first innings had shown that accurate slow bowling would be required for Walton to have any chance, and so it was a statement of faith when skipper Chohan gave the new ball to the off breaks of 17 year old Minshull. This faith was repaid as the youngster removed both Burgess and Bedi in a superbly ballsy four over spell in the powerplay. Walton's seamers, including the captain himself, offered less control and a watchful partnership between Andersson and Soni allowed Sunbury to climb closer to the target. Paul Bainbridge's off spin proved hard to get away, but even at five down Sunbury had enough time to reach the target largely in controlled ones and twos with an over and a half to spare.
It later transpired that Sunbury had fielded an ineligible player, and so Walton would take their place in Finals Day nonetheless.