Orsett Cricket Club won the South Essex District Cricket Board’s U12 indoor six a side cricket competition in the most dramatic of styles at Grays School on Friday. The School Lane club clinched the title by reaching Rayleigh’s score with just one ball – and one wicket – remaining.
Rayleigh, who were also unbeaten in the league going into this final game of the tournament, batted first and scored 84 for the loss of five wickets with opener Max Jones finishing with 35 not out. But Orsett’s Thomas Duck responded in kind with an undefeated 30 as his team reached their target in a tense finish, ending with 85-5. The fielding from both teams was excellent; Will Gibbon of Orsett became an early run-out victim and it was the first time he had been dismissed in the league, having batted in all five previous games and had accumulated no fewer than 140 runs.
Rayleigh were consigned to the runners-up position but, like Orsett, they had produced quality performances throughout the event.
In the evening’s two earlier games, Belhus “A” saved their best until the final week as they narrowly defeated Horndon on the Hill by one wicket thanks to a match-winning score of 20 not out from Braydon Scarlett. This sole win by the Belhus team was sufficient to elevate them from the bottom spot to fifth in the league, despite a strong innings from Horndon’s Sam Smith, who finished unbeaten on 32.
Meanwhile, Thurrock “A” defeated Belhus “B” by 36 runs. Thurrock “A” scored 114 all out for whom Connor Ramm hit 30, while Belhus “B” had George Maidment top scoring with 13 in an innings which yielded a total of 78 for the loss of five wickets.