Bettis might have been Man of the Match for hitting 89 in
Sandford’s five-run victory over Exeter in yesterday’s Devon
Senior Cup final at Braunton, but jubilant skipper Richard
Baggs nominated Neil Davey as his probable match winner.
Chasing 237 to win in 40 overs, Exeter
looked down and out at 151for six with 10 overs to go and
Derek Lammonby just out for a quickfire 40.
Lammonby and Mark Gribble had hauled
Exeter back from the brink of a non-event by putting on
32 in less than four overs to break the shackles tied on
them by Sandford’s bowlers, and in particular Richard Coupe
(2-28), Stuart Priscott and Richard Foan.
But Zimbabwean Jordache Rawson had other
ideas and bludgeoned Exeter back into the game with a quickfire
40 that came off 28 balls and included four sixes and two
With Gribble keeping an end going for
an eventual 41 not out, Exeter reached the 38th over needing
24 to win and Rawson in full cry.
The turning point was a sprawling catch
at wide mid-off by Neil Davey that sent a disbelieving Rawson
back to the pavilion.
Fourteen to win off the last over from
Foan proved just too many for Exeter, who needed a boundary
off the penultimate ball to stay in contention and only
managed a single.
Baggs was fulsome in his praise for Bettis,
but added that Exeter were in danger of snatching the game
while Rawson was at the crease.
“Rawson and Mark Gribble batted well
and had got the asking rate down to eight an over, which
on a good deck like Braunton’s with short boundaries at
either end is very gettable,” said Baggs.
“The game changed with that catch by Neil –
one of the best I have ever seen – which stopped Exeter
before it was too late.
“The way Rawson was going another over
and we would have had it. That’s how imporant the catch
“Our fielding and out cricket was superb
– apart from when we dropped Del (Lammonby) which I thought
was going to cost us – but Neil’s catch was the icing on
Baggs didn’t mention himself in the post-match
summing up, but his own contribution with the bat shouldn’t
Baggs (34) and Bettis put on 75 for Sandford’s
fifth wicket, which set them up nicely for a slog in the
last five overs.
Trevor Anning belted 18 off 11 balls
and the decision to send in straight hitter John Rhodes
with an over to go paid off.
For Rhodes launched Mark Gribble for
two sixs in the last over, hits that ultimately put the
match beyond Exeter’s reach.
Sandford 236-6 (N Bettis 89, R Baggs
34, R Foan 26; A Gribble 2-58, M Gribble 2-51), Exeter 231-7
(R Holman 34, G Lammonby 25, D Lammonby 40, J Rawson 40,
M Gribble 41no; R Foan 3-51, R Coupe 2-28). Sandford bt
Exeter by 5 runs.