Double delight for hosts in Smash It tournament

VALLEY End dominated the girls’ Smash It competition staged at their club.

The hosts won both sections – under-nine and under-11 – of the year’s final tourney.

Valley End’s Caroline Hales said: “This was the last of the Smash It tournaments organised by Gabby Dunnage, who is part of the Surrey Cricket Foundation and whose role this year has been to promote girls’ cricket in the county.

The under nines winners

“In response to demand, Valley End set up a girls’ team in June this year with just a handful of girls.

“Such was the interest and enthusiasm that we now have 32 girls registered, and they have been playing in these tournaments over the summer.

“Some of the earlier tournaments had just a few teams entering but they have grown, with one having 16 sides participating.

“Last Friday we had just seven teams – three in the under-nine age group and four in the under-11s.

“We were due to host the tournament two weeks previously with a lot more teams and even an under-13 age group – but the weather got the better of us.

“Gabby said that this year has seen a significant increase in girls’ participation throughout Surrey. At Valley End we are very keen to promote girls’ cricket, and will be holding winter tournaments. Some of our girls will be moving into hard-ball cricket.

“We are very much looking forward to next season and will be entering under-11 and under-13 teams in the Surrey leagues as well as next year’s tournaments. Not only have the girls improved their cricket skills but they have increased their confidence and teamwork, had fun and made friends.”

Valley end scores a wicket against Bagshot

Annabel Lewis captained Valley End under-nines to glory last Friday. Bagshot were runners-up and Wimbledon & Epsom came third.

And Abigail Shaw-Hales led Valley End under-11s to success in their section. Bagshot took second place, with Reigate third and Horsley & Send fourth.

Francesca Barclay had a truly smashing time for Valley End under-11s – in only two overs, she clubbed 30 runs.

For more pictures, see the 12 September edition of the News & Mail

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