Redbridge won their second boys’ title in three years and Wandsworth won gold in the girls’ competition at a thrilling Balfour Beatty London Youth Games Indoor Cricket competition at Lord’s on Sunday.
Redbridge overcame a tough quarter-final with last year’s runners-up Wandsworth before seeing off Haringey impressively in the semi-final to set up a final against Southwark.
The improving South London side set them a tricky target of 95, but Redbridge showed cool heads as they ground out the runs and met their target with a full over to spare.
Barnet shared bronze with Haringey as losing semi-finalists. Redbridge Team Manager Mahesh Velani was a happy man after his side’s success.
“We are really delighted to be champions again.” He said. “It’s good to know that these boys will be back next year and will have a chance to defend their championship. It was a good all-round display.
“We weren’t too happy with our batting in the first two games, we were a little bit too slow. But in the final, that was the most complete performance of the tournament. A few of the boys are brothers of those that have won it, so they will enjoy telling their brothers.”
In the girls’ competition, the crunch tie came in the semi-finals when Wandsworth faced defending champions Hammersmith & Fulham. Each borough came through their quarter-finals comfortably enough, bowling out Lewisham and Hackney respectively.
But their last four tie went right down to the last ball and Wandsworth scampered the necessary runs to edge the title-holders by two runs.
It set up a final with Hillingdon, one of the surprise teams of the day. But they were well worth their finals spot having overcome Haringey, then Greenwich in thrillers.
But the final was dominated by Wandsworth who posted 117 runs before bowling out their opponents for 36, who nevertheless could reflect on a well-earned silver medal. But the gold belonged to Wandsworth and Team Manager Kiyo Jason paid tribute to his side.
He said: “The girls did fantastic. It’s a very, very young team still. Last year we got to the quarter-finals and got beaten by a good team. This year they learned from that and had a very hard match with Hammersmith & Fulham – that was an awesome match.
“They carried that confidence through and kept to their game plan and came out with a great result. It’s a great success.”
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