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Top image: Mens Indoor Cricket Winners (Exeter 2's). Bottom Image: Mens Indoor Cricket Runners Up (Exeter 1's)

Two Exeter Teams Contest BUCS Final

The culminating stage of the BUCS indoor cricket Trophy tournament played at Leicester on 5th February, concluded with the two EUMCC sides contesting the gold medals, a remarkable, perhaps unique, outcome in a BUCS competition.

EUMCC entered two teams for the tournament last term and had to label one the 1st team and the other the 2nd, though they were similar in quality, the 1sts having the classier batting and the 2nds the more solid bowling. In preliminary rounds, the 1sts lost two games (one to the 2nds) and so qualified only for the Trophy (second tier) play-offs, while the undefeated 2nds were, under the competition rules, not permitted to proceed to the first tier. Happily, the two teams kept out of each other's way until the very last Trophy game, though to do that at Leicester they both had to top their groups.  

That was achieved with only the odd worry. The 2nds began with a loss to Queen Mary's, but then had convincing wins over UEA and Aston.  The 1sts won all three games in their group, though there was a nervous last-ball win over Imperial before De Montfort and Worcester were disposed of comfortably.  In the semis, Aston and Imperial never really challenged the Exeter teams.  The 1sts front four of Luke Maslen (captain), Jamie Baird, Johnny Connell and James Boyle never failed, while the 2nds bowling attack, led by Dom Morgan, the day's most economical bowler, always made scoring difficult. It promised a tight final. 

The 2nds batted first, leaving the 1sts to chase, as in all their games on the day. 

Skipper Billy Buckingham and Will Chesterman provided a solid start and Taylor Ingham-Hill and Will Lucas took the scoring to 73-5 after the ten overs. In a small and low-scoring court, it was a decent rather than daunting total. Boyle (2-12) and George Addy (2-24) were the wicket-takers. Although Maslen looked to hold the reply together, Baird fell early to Morgan and a remarkable catch turned the game by Buckingham to remove Connell and then by the disastrous run-out of Boyle. The innings subsided to 54, Morgan (1-9) and Chesterman (2-9) the wicket-takers, leaving the 2nds winners by the surprisingly generous margin of 19 runs. and so retaining the Trophy won by them in 2022. Lucas and Chesterman had been in the previous team too. As all the other teams in the final stage were 1st teams, the victory underlined the depth of cricket talent at Exeter, as we head towards the outdoor season. 

Teams:  1sts:  Luke Maslen (c), Jamie Baird (w), Johnny Connell, James Boyle, Akshay Bhardawaj and George Addy.    2nds: Billy Buckingham (c), Will Chesterman, Taylor Ingham-Hill (w), Will Lucas, Dom Morgan and Jack Peirce.  

Written by:Bruce Coleman 

The programme here at the University of Exeter is ranked number 3 for university programmes, hosting five men’s and two women’s teams competing in both the indoor and outdoor BUCS seasons. Facilities include the Sir Christopher Ondaatje Devon Cricket Centre which has four full-length indoor nets and bowling machines. Learn more about the performance cricket programme via our website.

Date: 17 February 2023