Swardeston’s Sunday XI booked a place in their second consecutive Challenge Cup final yesterday with a 3 wicket win away to Fakenham.
A confident Fakenham side won the toss and decided to bat, but it was Swardeston who immediately took the game to their hosts.
Opening spells from Rob Micklethwaite (8-2-31-2) and Steven Cadge (8-1-27-3) had the hosts reeling, and when Fakenham’s overseas Rudi Hillerman was dismissed with the scoreboard showing a measly 57-6, Swardeston were well on top.
Swardeston then set about strangling the Fakenham middle order, with both James Pearson (8-2-12-2) and Robbie Bridgstock (8-2-18-0) not only making runs hard to come by, but also getting through their overs extremely quickly.
Combined with another superb team display in the field, the innings meandered towards an end and Fakenham posted a below par 123-8 off their allocated 40 overs.
Swardeston’s reply started brightly, with both Matt Hogg and Jordie Taylor punishing some wayward opening bowling from Fakenham.
However, in typical Swardeston fashion, the good didn’t last and the nerves took hold once Hillerman found his line and length, and reduced the scoreboard from 32-1 to 44-5. Will Kennard then countered with some sublime cover drives, racing to 32 before being bowled, which left James Pearson (28 not out) to ensure Swardeston got over the line in the 32nd over.
Swardeston are set to play Quebec in the final on Monday 29th August, at Barkers Lane, Sprowston.