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Cricket: Rolleston will play Quarndon in final of the Marston's Smooth Cup

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: July 26, 2014

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ROLLESTON earned their place in the Marston's Smooth Cup Final by virtue of a narrow ten run home victory against Division Two promotion contenders West Hallam White Rose.

They will now meet Quarndon in the final at Staveley Welfare on Monday August 25 (11.30am).

On winning the toss, visiting skipper Martin Brandrick opted to bowl but, despite some excellent swing bowling by evergreen Peter Hort, Rolleston openers Gareth Marshall (36) and Mark James (28) proved hard to dislodge,

The breakthrough came in the 23rd over, a most unfortunate dismissal for Marshall who had left his ground when his partner's firmly-struck half volley deflected off bowler Lee Barrow and on to the stumps at the non-striker's end.

Carl Cruz bowled James in the next over and, following Louis Burrows' edge behind to Tatler and Paul Allen's lbw to overseas Jeandre Ludick, the hosts position was far from promising at 90-4 after 31 overs.

Hopes were raised when Scott Cobley (13) and Mohammad Zaroob (49) took the score into three figures but the former inside-edged Cruz on to his stumps and was replaced by Kamal Subhani (12).

Barrow returned to the attack but Zaroob took him to the cleaners and smashed four boundaries.

Subhani tried to take an unlikely second run to fielder Harry Porter, the throw was quick and accurate enough to leave the batsman floundering and Alex Brown became Zaroob's third partner.

Hort was assigned the job of dismissing the increasingly threatening Zaroob but soon saw his bowling figures deteriorate – only six runs conceded from his first seven overs but 15 from the next two. A huge six into the car park proved to be Zaroob's last boundary.

Tom Brandrick castled Brown and, in the next over, Hort struck back by luring Zaroob from his crease and Tatler whipped off the bails.

Andrew Cooper was trapped in front by Hort's next delivery but Dan Clarke denied the hat-trick. Ben Liversage added a couple of sweetly struck boundaries and the last pair added what resulted in being a vital 17 runs from the last three overs to close the innings on 180-9.

The target seemed eminently achievable provided the visitors didn't lose early wickets.

The Brandrick father and son combination raced to 33 before a superb pick-up and direct hit by Liversage was deemed to have caught Tom Brandrick (19) short of the line.

Zaroob bowled Tatler (12) whose 20-ball innings consisted only of dot balls and boundaries and the hard hitting Ludick fell in the next over, run out as Zaroob swiftly launched a return into Clarke's gloves – 51-3.

But the best and highest partnership of the day was about to follow, Brandrick (56) and Josh Bostock (33) making the most of their team's early run-rate and gradually lifting West Hallam into a match-winning position.

Following an inauspicious opening spell, Alex Brown (4-39) returned to wreak havoc on the visitors' innings.

With 130 runs on the board, seven wickets and almost 12 overs in hand the fourth wicket partnership had done a splendid job.

However, Brown struck on three occasions in two overs – firstly by bowling Brandrick, then having Barrow caught behind for a golden duck and finally thanking Subhani for his diving catch at square leg to dismiss Bostock.

Carl Cruz was bowled when Marshall's delivery shot along the ground to leave the batsman with no chance.

Back came Brown to take out his namesake Matt, and pile pressure on Lathbury and Hort. West Hallam required 13 runs from the final three overs but Marshall (3-26) bowled Hort and then pinned Porter leg before.

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