Louth Cricket Club players reign in Spain

The winning team featured two Louth CC players EMN-180430-090141002
The winning team featured two Louth CC players EMN-180430-090141002

Louth Cricket Club player Zubair Ahmed led a Lincolnshire side to a pre-season tournament victory in Spain.

Zubair took his Phoenix team, comprising Louth players and others from around the region, to participate in the Atkinson Cup T20 Cricket Tournament in Murcia.

Louth CC cricketer Zubair Ahmed led a Lincs team to success in Spain EMN-180430-090205002

Louth CC cricketer Zubair Ahmed led a Lincs team to success in Spain EMN-180430-090205002

Eight teams took part, including six teams from the UK, with Phoenix looking to go one better than the runners-up spot they had achieved twice before. Having qualified through the round-robin stage they met Netterton CC, from London, in the semi-finals.

Phoenix scored 180 in their 20 overs, with Bilal making 90, and Netterton started cautiously before accelerating during the middle overs.

But the introduction of Louth Taverners skipper Khawar Naeem broke the partnership and took three quick wickets to seal a 45-run victory and a place in the final where they met Northwood, another good London outfit.

Northwood batted first and after a solid start they lost regular wickets against good bowling and excellent fielding.

Louth CC all-rounder Zeeshan Ahmed took three wickets with his left-arm spin as Northwood were restricted to 110 from their 20 overs.

Phoenix knew a low-scoring chase should not be taken lightly, and openers Khawar and Taimoor started cautiously against good bowling.

At the halfway stage, Phoenix were 40-3, and with the run rate climbing and pressure starting to build, Phoenix lost further wickets to leave them 70-6 with five overs left.

With the required run rate at nearly eight-an-over, Zeeshan played aggressively and started to hit some delightful shots, including 19 in one over late on to ease the nerves.

His unbeaten 55 steered the team to victory with four balls to spare.

Phoenix were finally able to hold the winners’ trophy and will hope to retain the title next year.