Hale Barns First XI completed a promising campaign in a disappointing manner as they were brushed aside by Stockport Georgians CC, which resulted in the team falling to sixth position in the table.
HBCC had been in fine form having been unbeaten in their last eight league matches, but struggled greatly to handle the visitors’ spin attack and failed to get close to a defendable total.
The introduction of Simon Normanton began the fall of wickets as he took two dismissals in the same over. It was then the turn of Oliver Ormerod (2-21) to join the wicket-taking party as he also struck twice to put Barns in major trouble on 33-4 from 23 overs.
Cooper continued to stand firm, reaching the 30th over before eventually being dismissed for a determined 93-ball 19, with Normanton (4-16) again claiming two victims in a single over.
Tommy Smith and Callum Schora came together at the crease and went on to form the best partnership of the innings as the duo added 21 runs to the total, with the latter hitting two of the three boundaries scored by the team.
The return of opening bowler James Locke quickly ended the rearguard stand as Schora departed for 14, while T Smith (13) followed soon after. And the lower order collapse was in full flow as Locke (4-9) wrapped up the final four wickets, with Barns slipping from 62-6 to 67 all out off 46.2 overs.
Georgians maintained their dominance by making a swift response with the bat as they raced to 41-0 from the opening 10 overs.
Ben Jones and Ned Bailey reached a half century partnership for the opening wicket, with Bailey looking particularly fluent having found the boundary on seven occasions during his knock of 36 from 31 deliveries before Jake Romer ended his cameo.
Romer (2-16) then claimed an impressive scalp after removing overseas player Adam Keene for a golden duck, while Cooper’s (2-33) quick double saw him secure the crown for leading wicket-taker in the division with a tally of 58.
However, it was not enough to prevent the inevitable result as Georgians cruised to a six-wicket victory in just 15.4 overs, with Jones finishing undefeated on 23.