Bickley Park 2s secured promotion to division 1 after an enthralling season that had 6 teams genuinely fighting for promotion, ending with Bickley taking the title, with Broadstairs runners up.
18 games, 12 wins, 4 defeats and 2 incomplete (which would have both been probable wins) represents a good season in a competitive league, with even the bottom teams posing their own unique threats. It certainly wasn’t a cruise either, with an unbeaten run in the final 5 games (4 wins, 1 incomplete) still only securing the title by 9 points.
With the bat, special mention has to go to Mick KIng who topped the charts again with an impressive 477 runs, including a magnificent century in the first game. If he can improve his chat in the slips, he should be in for another good season next year. Parag Patel (349) and Alex Cooper (313) also contributed valuable runs, often forming match winning partnerships. Pym, Stafford and Ramsey all made good contributions as well, with Pym in fine form before his call up to the 1s and Ramsey regularly scoring vital late runs to take us over the line. Having the quality of the likes of Firth, Monoghan and Green (weddings aside) coming in makes a huge difference too, with all contributing match winning innings.
With the ball Geoff Williams was the stand-out, bowling over 160 overs at an economy a shade over 3 and picking up 27 wickets. A remarkable effort of consistency, rarely bowling a bad bowl let alone spell. Stafford picked up 27 wickets as well, including a couple of decent 5fers, whilst Aimey bowled beautifully with the new ball, claiming 19. Ramsey and Harriot also bowled well, including the odd magic spells. What probably made Bickley so hard to beat, was the quality spin to complement the pace attack. Crowdy, Poole, Hewitt and Howes all played their part, especially as the decks starting turning more towards the end of the season.
All in all 20 players were used, with all 20 contributing at some point to help win the title. Having such a strong squad made all the difference, and expect it to get even better next year with a couple of new additions alongside Charlie Smith getting another year older and piling on the runs.
Special mention to Paul Crowdy and Mick King, who both captained really well. I think the atmosphere in the dressing room, and the way those two led, really transferred onto the pitch, resulting in a title win and a fun brand of cricket.
Final thanks to Chris and Barry for arranging a fantastic day at Lords to top off a memorable season.
Until next year.