Spain win the BI-LATERAL SERIES against Jersey

April 15, 2024

Spain clinched consecutive victories in two closely fought games to win the bi-lateral series with Jersey this last weekend at La Manga resort in Murcia.

Three games in total were played during the brief visit to the Spanish mainland by the Channel Islanders. Arriving at the ground around mid-day on Saturday the game in the afternoon had been agreed to be a development match prior to the two T20I ranking matches on the Sunday.

Starting at 16.00 hours the Spaniards offered Jersey the choice of batting or bowling and the teams agreed prior to the match that roll on-roll off substitutions could take place at five over intervals. All the players from each team participated in the informal event with wicket keeper changes at ten overs being utilised by both Jersey and Spain.

For the record Jersey won the game by 11 runs. Zak Tribe got a half century for his team who put on a total of 154 for 6 in their twenty over allocation. Charlie Ruminestricz, who has just returned from a season of cricket in Australia, was the pick of the Spanish bowlers, bagging four wickets  in his three over spell that yielded just 13 runs (all singles). Spain's reply came just short of the required asking rate by 11 runs. The middle order of Daniel Doyle Calle, Alex  Davidson-Soler  and Hamza Saleem Dar seemed to have the run chase under control but a late innings collapse with a string of wickets falling at the business end of the match gave Jersey a close victory.

The development game appetizer was a game of good quality cricket and set the scene nicely for the following day when the two ranking matches took place. Coming into the event the visitors were standing ten places above Spain in the ICC rankings. (Jersey 24th and  Spain 34th). Jersey were missing Asa Tribe (on duty with Glamorgan against Derbyshire) Nick Greenwood, and Benjamin Ward, whilst the hosts had batsman Josh Trembearth unavailable and Sebastian Piñan Hughes out with a niggling injury.

Spain won the toss and decided to bowl. It looked like the  wrong decision initially as Jersey raced to 89 without loss before the introduction of spin broke the opening partnership with the penultimate ball of the ninth over. Carlyon was caught by Daniel Doyle Calle in the deep when looking to reach his half century. Zak Tribe, joined Patrick Gouge at the crease and they advanced the score to 125 before Tribe was clean bowled by Burns for 23. Gouge was the next man out with a top score of 52 for Jersey, and late cameos from Jonty Jenner (43 off 27) and Charlie Brennan (17 off 12) took the Jersey total to a very challenging 195 for 5.

Debutant Muhammad Babar and the evergreen Muhammad Yasin opened the batting for the Spaniards and Babar had a dream start blasting Carlyon for 22 runs in the very first over. Spain dovetailed the Jersey innings and kept up with the required pace of just under 10 runs an over. Spain lost their first wicket in the eighth over with the score on 70 when Babar holed out to Charlie Brennan in the second over of Julius Summerauer. After reaching 104 Spain lost three quick wickets to stand at 115 for 4 a third of a way through the 14th over.

With the game  seemingly slipping away Muhammad Ihsan came to the crease and along with Daniel Doyle Calle they changed the momentum of the game into the favour of the Spaniards. Doyle Calle fell with the score on 167 with 21 balls remaining. Ihsan was in no mood to let the game slip continued to bludgeon Spain to victory. With captain Christian Munoz Mills also contributing the Spaniards overtook the Jersey total with two balls and five wickets to spare. Munoz-Mills scored an important 11 runs off ten balls but it was Ihsan who took all of the accolades, and the man of the match award for his unbeaten 41 off just 19 balls.

After lunch the second game took place. Jersey won the toss and elected to bat. The Spanish bowling attack was much more clinical this time around and bowled out the Channel Islanders for 141 with one ball outstanding. Gouge once again opened and top scored with 48. Jonty Jenner played a classy innings for 38 and  Harrison Carlyon was the only other Jersey player to reach double figures, hitting 19 off just 13 balls at the top of the order.The Spanish bowlers were also very disciplined in the extras department, with a solitary leg bye being the only sundry added to the  total.

A sub par total put Spain in the driving seat at the interval but the Islanders are one of the top associate teams in the world and the watching spectators knew that the game was not even close to being over yet. So it proved as Jersey chipped away at the wickets column at regular intervals. Back to back wickets for Dan Burrell in the 19th over and a further scalp for Julius Summerauer two balls into the twentieth led the game evenly poised with Spain requiring six runs with four balls and one wicket remaining.

Coming in at number 11, Charlie Rumisterwicz has scored a century as an opener on this ground (his home club). He casually stroked a single off his first ball through the covers to put the Spanish skipper Christian Munoz on strike. A straight drive evaded the emerging long on and long off fielders and tied the scores, and then the very next ball the Sporting Alfas player caressed a ball behind square for another boundary and ensure another Spanish victory.

All the supporters and players celebrated the achievement in what was a fantastic advert for the twenty over and International associate game. Cricket España would like to thank Jersey cricket for accepting the invitation to play in mainland Spain. Jersey will head to Germany this summer for their European qualifying group whilst the Spaniards head to Guernsey, (Jersey's channel island neighbours) for their ICC qualifier in August.

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