FOLLOWING their success as Wiltshire Champions in the ECB National Competition (The Vitality Cup), South Wilts Under 13s, sponsored by Foresters Friendly Society, entertained the Somerset champions Taunton Deane at Lower Bemerton in the first round of the national stage of the competition.

Batting first, South Wilts, against some quality bowling from Williams (3-10) had to cope with the early loss of both openers and key batsmen Matthew Falconer and Thomas Whiting.

The innings needed to be rebuilt and the impetus was provided by Arthur Moore and 12-year-old prospect Harry Shardlow.

After a circumspect beginning Moore began to open up with a series of quality attacking strokes, whilst Shardlow provided solid support at the other end.

When Moore (27) was finally dismissed, Will Musgrave provided a quickfire 14.

South Wilts closed on 89-9 with Shardlow remaining unbeaten on 20, an innings that proved to be invaluable.

Chafey finished with figures of 3-17 for Taunton Deane.

This total would, on balance, have been about 20 short of par so victory required a bowling and outfield performance to match that of Taunton.

Charlie Tomlinson (4-1-10-2) gave the home side the ideal start with a wicket in the first over, followed by Falconer, who has already began to make his mark with the bat at senior level and determined to compensate for his early demise, really opened up the game with a wicket in the second over.

Taylor (20) and Baverstock (18) moved the game back slightly in Taunton’s favour, but three run outs and a fine spell from Sam Reeve (4-0-16-2) brought the game to a nail biting conclusion, and with Bertie Dorman and Moore weighing in with a wicket apiece, Taunton were bowled out for 87 just three runs shy of their target.

South Wilts now go forward to stage two with a visit to Dorset champions Broadstone and a place in the Regional Finals being held at South Wilts and beyond that the National Finals.

Thanks go to team manager Richard Dorman, wife Nikki and team Coach Tom Pearce who have all done sterling work behind the scenes.