Under sunny skies and with Lord's looking at its very best, the British Army won the Inter Services Twenty20 crown on 18th June 2013.
The three contests were played out in front of a lively crowd that enjoyed the high standard of competitive cricket that was on offer. In addition, local school children were given the opportunity to play Kwik Cricket on the outfield during the first interval and the crowd was entertained by the Band of the Royal Air Force Regiment in the second interval.
Prior to the final match, the Chief Executive at Services Sound and Vision Corporation Mr Nick Pollard presented the Tournament Referee with the match ball (and associated aircrew flying log book) on behalf of the ball sponsor, BFBS. The match ball had been flown around the world by the Royal Air Force to many service outposts completing a total of 42,167 miles.
The first game of the tournament set the scene for an exciting day with reigning champions the Royal Air Force pitted against the British Army, who most considered to be the pre-tournament favourites.
The British Army did not disappoint, scoring an impressive 178 off their allotted 20 overs for the loss of five wickets, thanks mainly to an impressive 82 not out from opener Captain Storm Green.
In reply, the Royal Air Force, despite some spirited middle-order batting, were never able to keep up with the required run rate or keep sufficient wickets in reserve and were bowled out for 122, giving the Army a comfortable 56-run victory.
The second game saw the Royal Air Force look to regroup against the Royal Navy. Batting first, the Royal Air Force quickly got the measure of the pitch much better than in their first match and set an above par score of 178 for the loss of seven wickets.
Tight bowling and impressive fielding enabled the Royal Air Force to beat the Royal Navy by 71 runs
The final game saw the British Army winning the toss and again electing to bat against the Royal Navy. After a nervous start that saw them slump to 13 for three, the British Army regrouped and finished on 166 for five from their allotted 20 overs, thanks primarily to a stand of 91 between Captain Ian Massey (54 not out) and Bombardier Sherwin Govender (45).
The Royal Navy, despite a brave and spirited 51 from ETWE Ian Buss, were never able to dominate the tight bowling and excellent catching, eventually reaching 124 off their allotted 20 overs.
The British Army emerged as comfortable victors by 42 runs and with two victories were crowned as Tournament Champions.
The skipper, LCpl Jacques Prinsloo, received the Energy Plus Management Ltd Inter Services Twenty20 Trophy from Mr Mike Griffith (MCC President) and held it aloft to rapturous applause in front of the Pavilion.
Captain Ian Massey was awarded the Player of the Tournament for turning the British Army fortunes in the game against the Royal Navy and then consolidating with a match winning half century.
The opportunity to play at Lord’s is one that is relished by every cricketer and this year’s tournament served to display once again the very best of the available service talent on the most renowned cricketing stage while raising funds for Combat Stress, the chosen charity partner.
It could not have been achieved without the unswerving support of the MCC; the IST20 sponsor Heineken UK; the ball sponsor BFBS; and the myriad of event partners that agreed to the sponsorship package.