The rescheduled 2021 Giffard Plate Final took place at Tynemouth CC where Northumbria & Durham hosted Dyfed-Powys on a dry but chilly day in the North East.
The Welshmen had decided to make the most of what was to be their Final match in the competition (details later) by flying up from Bristol and enjoying the “Geordie” hospitality in Newcastle.
Prior to the start both teams & officials gathered pitch side in memory of the recently departed section Chair Simon Cole who tragically passed away just 12 days following his retirement as Chief Constable of Leicestershire. A 1 min applause followed some eloquent, emotional and passionate words from Championship Secretary Paul Sims representing the Committee.
The toss was won by “Dumbria” – the new name they have now affectionately adopted, who invited DPP to bat first in an agreed 40 over match.
The top 6 DP batters were all former BPCC players with Richard Grant and Huw Evans opening the innings.
A steady first 10 overs saw the total reach 42 when Grant was lbw to Smith for 32. Evans was joined by Garry Williams adding a further 19 in 6 overs before Evans was caught & bowled by Stewart for 20.
Simon Cole now came to the crease adding 67 with William’s building the foundations for a big score when Williams was caught by Smith off the bowling of Deacon for 33 with the total on 118. Mark Davies (14*) then joined Cole in unbroken 4th wicket partnership of 81 in 11 overs as Cole dominated proceedings ending up 86* (7 x 4 / 1 x 6) the bowling as the innings closed on 199 – 3. Pick of the Dumbria bowling was Stewart 8 – 0 – 29 – 1 and Collins 8 – 0 – 19 – 0.
The Dumbria response almost mirrored the DP innings. Another steady start with contributions by Taylor (17) and Smith (38) took the total to 97 – 3 after 27 overs. Ben Harmison then joined Barry Stewart in what was to be a match winning partnership of 103 in following 11 overs. Harmison ended 61* (4 x 4 / 2 x 6) with Stewart 56* (4 x 4) as the reached their target with a couple of overs to spare. Pick of the DP bowling was Gareth Grant 8 – 1 – 15 – 1. Man of the Match was Barry Stewart for his all round performance.
The match was played in great competitive spirit by both teams and was yet another credit to Police Cricket.
Sadly this is to the final time that Dyfed-Powys will be participating in the National Championship following a recent decision by their Senior Command to stop all time off for Sport. – yet another blow for Staff Wellbeing.
They have always been a very small squad but have been at the top of Police Cricket for the last 16 years appearing in 10 Finals since 2005 and lifting the City of London Cup on 8 occasions with 6 players representing BPCC since 1999.
Thanks for the memories and let’s hope this is not the last we see of them.