Reed through to National Village Cup final

Liebenberg the hero after impressive knock

National Village Cup semi-final

Eversholt 214-7 (47 overs)

Reed 215-6 (37 overs)

Reed won by four wickets

REED made it through to the National Village Cup final with victory over SHL Division Three side Eversholt on Sunday.

Lee Johnson, making his village cup debut as captain standing in for the injured Heslam, won the toss and elected to bowl to make the most of some overnight dampness in the wicket. And Johnson (2-33) led from the front taking two early wickets in an excellent opening spell, one thanks also to a superb catch by keeper Sean Tidey.

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Johnson was supported by Jack Tidey (1-44) who also picked up an early breakthrough and this saw Eversholt struggling at 36-3 after 12 overs.

Reed continued to restrict their opponents with Peckett (2-36) bowling well but the home side’s lower-middle order showed they were not going to go down without a fight.

On a small ground that was difficult for the fielding side to stop shots reaching the boundary, Eversholt enjoyed an excellent final 10 overs to post a challenging score of 214-7 from their 47 overs.

In reply, Reed set off in the right tone with makeshift opener Sean Tidey (15) and the in-form Tom Greaves (26) hitting five 6s between them in the first 10 overs. However, they both fell looking to find further boundaries and at 47-2 after 12 overs the game was certainly in the balance.

This position continued as Karl Ward (29) and Stuart Smith (44) consolidated the innings. When Ward fell for a good knock at 82-3 after 21 overs, Reed had wickets in hand, but were in need of upping the rate.

However, Roddi Liebenberg stepped up to make his first team debut after several impressive knocks for the IIs and he quickly played himself in before taking apart the Eversholt attack.

He smashed 75 in just 41 balls including eight 6s that had the large crowd often ducking for cover on the boundary.

When Liebenberg eventually fell caught on the boundary, Reed found themselves in the driving seat at 192-5 after 34 overs, requiring just 23 to win from 30 balls. Nevertheless, there was still work to be done, particularly when Village Cup stalwart Smith, after another crucial knock, and quarter final hero Jack Tidey also departed.

With a long batting line-up seemingly paying off, Ed Garrott and Phil Frenay played beautifully to see Reed home by four wickets with two overs to spare.

Reed will play North Mymms or Botany Bay in the final at Reed on Sunday, June 12.