Isle of Man have won the European Under 17 Division 2 Championships on their own grounds with a five wickets victory over Italy in the final at King William’s College. In front of a large and parochial crowd they reached their target of 110 with 12 overs to spare.
Fittingly captain Daniel Hawke was at the other end when Shaun Kelly hit the winning boundary. Hawke finished 27 not out and ensured against any accidents when Ross Burns was run out for 43 with the total on 92.
Indeed the only time the hosts were in trouble was when they attempted to run quick singles, two of them proving fatal, but there was no need to hurry chasing such a modest total.
It was the Island’s bowlers which set up the victory with scarcely a weak link as Italy, most people’s favourites coming into the final after their impressive saunter through Group A, were restricted to 109 for nine in their 40 overs.
Spain suffered agony for the second day in a row as France beat them by one wicket off the penultimate ball of their third-place play-off match at Cronkbourne.
Needing seven off the last over, Aamir Zahir hit the first ball for four but France were then presented with two no balls to level the scores. Zahir was then bowled by Sandeep Singh but last man Azad Pervez was up to the task and an inside edge off his first ball won the match.
Spain’s problems had started in the 26th over of their own innings when they lost their second wicket with the total on 84. Exactly 10 overs later they were 127 for eight.
Spain got up to 158 for nine with the help of 14 wides but the French were always in the hunt thanks to William Smati’s 64. The opener batted almost 32 overs and left his side needing 41 from the last eight overs. Captain Tom Liddiard was out three overs later for 31 but Ammar Zahir with a more than a little help from Spain set up the exciting finale.
Switzerland finished fifth after a five wickets win over Belgium at KWC 2 with captain Trystan George leading from the front.
Needing only 99 to win, George scored 40 of his side’s runs and although he was out just six short of victory, the Swiss reached their target with more than eight overs to spare.
Midhun Lal continued his fine form in the tournament, with four more wickets to finish with 14. He took all four wickets in a spell of 17 balls to reduce Belgium to 65 for five and when Ali Saleem replaced Lal, he took a wicket with his first ball to continue the Belgians’ slide.
Germany beat Hellas to finish seventh, the Greeks dismissed for 69 at St Johns.
Harmanjot Singh was the destroyer in chief with five wickets for 19 runs from seven overs as only one German batsman reached double figures.
Singh also top scored in the first innings with 58 from No 5, and shared a stand of 71 with Jaskaran Singh before the latter was bowled for 48. There was an impressive rush to the finish by Germany who scored 42 off the last six overs with captain Steven Richards scoring 41 off 34 off four boundaries as his side finished on 191 for five.
Gibraltar won their first game of the week as Austria lost five wickets for three runs to go down by 18 runs at Crosby.
The Austrians were on course for victory themselves at the start of the 35th over, needing only another 23 runs from six overs but Roberts claimed the big wicket of Ciju Pathuppally, a crazy run out made it two in two and Roberts bowled Sohaib Farooq next ball to leave Austria 134 for seven.
Roberts gave them a respite but only to change ends and when he returned he took two more wickets in his final two overs as Austria finished on 138 for nine. Pathuppully, the player of the tournament, scored 59 for a tournament aggregate of 244; this was his third half century.
Mark Gomez, Gibraltar’s opening batsman, was their top scorer with 44 as the islanders totaled 156 for nine. It proved just enough.
Score summaries (final day):
At KWC 1.
Isle of Man beat Italy by 5 wickets and win tournament
Italy 109-9 (40 overs) Aycock 3-14, Ansell 3-27
Isle of Man 112-5 (28 overs) Burns 43
At Cronkbourne: France beat Spain by 1 wicket
Spain 158-9 (40 overs) Johnston 37, Z Zahir 3-15
France 159-9 (39.5 overs) Smati 64
At KWC 2: Switzerland beat Belgium by 5 wickets
Belgium 98 (27.2 overs) Lal 4-23, Saleem 3-18
Switzerland 99-5 (31.5 overs) George 40
At St Johns: Germany won by 122 runs
Germany 191-5 (40 overs) H Singh 58, J Singh 48, Richards 41*
Hellas 69 (23.2 overs) H Singh 5-19
At Crosby: Gibraltar won by 18 runs
Gibraltar 156-9 (40 overs) Gomez 44, Farooq 4-15
Austria 138-9 (40 overs) Pathuppally 59, Roberts 4-20