By CONRAD SUTCLIFFE
JAMES Fulner whacked an unbeaten 75 to steer Lustleigh to six-wicket win over Paignton 3rdXI in the final of the Valeport-sponsored Brockman Cup.
Paignton made 120 for three in the T20-format final and were glad of 66 from Carl McFarlane for getting there.
Young opener Brenton Pedley found the going tough against Lustleigh’s new-ball pair of Dave Grant and Duncan Manners-Chapman, who only conceded 30 runs in the first eight overs.
McFarlane was able to be more assertive when he batted and from the 10-over mark onwards Paignton’s run-rate reached 12-an-over at times, although not for long enough.
Matt Pearce accounted for McFarlane in the 18thover, ending a 105-run partnership. He dispatched five sixes and four fours from 48 balls faced. Pedley was the last man out for 36.
Grant (10) and Chris Mason (18) helped Fulner take Lustleigh up to 90 for one in reply.
There was a brief hesitation as Mason and Liam Wakefield fell in quick succession to Max Pedley (2-3) and Jack Harman respectively. By the time skipper Mike Wright was fourth out the target was down to 18 to win.
Fulner got most of them and finished the game in a hurry with 10 runs from three hits off the bowling of Jack Smith.
It was no surprise when Matt Quartley, the managing director of competition sponsors Valeport, awarded the man-of-the-match trophy to Fulner.
It was Lustleigh’s seventh win in the final of the oldest cup competition in Devon cricket and their first after a run of four defeats in finals. They did win a record-breaking six in a row between 1996-2001.
Paignton may have lost this final, but remain top of the all-time winners’ list with 10. Next best on eight are Barton, followed by Lustleigh (7) and Abbotskerswell with six.
It was Lustleigh’s second piece of silverware this season as Wright led the side to victory over Ivybridge seven days earlier in the final of the Tidball Insurance Services Cup.
Paignton 122-3 (C McFarlane 66, B Pedley 36; D Grant 1-14), Lustleigh 123-4 (J Fulner 75no, C Mason 18; M Pedley 2-17). Lustleigh bt Paignton by 6 wkts.