THE final 16 of the National Village KO was a classic cup match, with Frocester losing by one run in a thrilling contest against North Perrott at Pounds Close on Sunday, writes Eric Woodmason.

North Perrott won the toss and elected to bat first on a ground that looked full of runs in the warm sunshine. They made a flying start with 12 runs coming from the first over, but, in the 3rd over, with the total on 23, Richie Cave held a stunning one-handed catch at mid-on, off the bowling of his brother, Dan Cave. This brought Millfield schoolboy, Jamie Baird to the crease to join Whorlow. They added 136 for the second wicket, taking the total to 159-1 in the 29th over. Ashley Davis then entered the attack and dismissed Whorlow for 56 and then bowled Baird for a superb 84, which included 12 fours and a six. Davis picked up two more wickets to finish with 4-35 from a seven over spell. Jake Symes marshalled the tail with a patient 32, but none of the remaining batsmen got into double figures, as the visitors were bowled out for 227 off the penultimate delivery of the 40th over, Chad Trainor finishing with 3-41.

In a dramatic weekend, run-outs plagued Frocester’s run scoring. Will Naish was unluckily run out backing up, with the total on 31 in the 7th over. But, Callum Gegg held the innings together even when Will Helmke was run out for 21, by a direct hit from a throw from the boundary. Ashley Davis (25) joined Gegg in a partnership of 46 for the fourth wicket.

However, when Davis fell leg before, Frocester required 104 from 11 overs, and with Chris Whincup and Dan Cave dismissed in consecutive balls with the total at 157-6, the situation looked bleak for the Pounds Close unit. Matters did not improve with Callum Gegg caught in the covers for a brilliant 98, which included nine fours and three sixes.

However, Sam Birch stepped up to the mark and pushed for victory, well-supported by Richie Cave. They added 43 priceless runs, before requiring six for victory from the final over, but only two singles came from the first three deliveries and the pressure was on. Birch was bowled for an excellent 37 and Frocester fell one run short with Cave run out for 11 off the final delivery.

On Saturday, Frocester fell to an eight-wicket drubbing at Biddestone. There was no way back from 26-6, despite 42 from Nick Trainor which lifted the Frocester total to 84 all out, a total which Biddestone passed in 18 overs for the loss of two wickets. Burgage and Easton Royal are the visitors to Frocester next Saturday, 12.30pm start.

THE SDCA knockout competition takes place this Sunday at Pounds Close. Uley v Randwick starts at 11.30am and Frocester v Painswick begins at 2.30pm.