Surrey won the AC Inter-County Championship
Surrey won the 108th Inter County Championship at Sussex County and Compton over the Jubilee weekend. This was their 23rd outright win in the event, which was first held in 1897 and their fourth win since the current two division format was created in 1997.
At one point it looked as if Surrey would win all nine matches, but they surprisingly lost their final match to Oxfordshire 3-0, who finished a creditable third. Middlesex, the holders, got off to a great start winning all three matches on the first day 3-0, but successive defeats to Surrey and Essex put them out of contention, unless Surrey slipped up, and so finished runners up. Relegated from Division 1 were Glamorgan, Gloucestershire and Suffolk. The final round produced a very exciting finish at the bottom. Whoever won the match between Glamorgan and Lancashire would stay up, and whoever lost would go down. In the end Lancashire won 3-0, though all three games were close at -8, -7 and -7.
Following the withdrawal of Shropshire, Hampshire and Cheshire it was decided to run Division 2 as an 8 team event; promoting Sussex to replace Cheshire in Division 1. Somerset won all seven matches to finish first and a probable match with the CA Women's team next year. Also promoted were Berkshire and Yorkshire. Kent finished bottom for the first time since 2016 and are now holders of the wooden spoon.
The CA Select team benefited from Hampshire and Cheshire's absence and had the services of Ian Lines, David Maugham and Mike Town. Various players helped out with the other places, including Gareth Denyer (Glamorgan and Sussex qualified), over from Sydney, who was pleased to find himself partnering David Maugham.
Hopefully next year Shropshire, Hampshire and Cheshire will return and we will be able to revert to a 22 team event. The switch of the event to the Jubilee weekend did cause some organisers difficulty in raising teams and so some were weaker than normal
Thanks to the Sussex and Compton clubs for once again welcoming all the players and providing such good lawns and facilities.
Positions are decided on 1) Match wins, 2) Game wins, 3) Who beat Whom
The team squads were
Rich Waterman (C), Andrew Dutton, Robert Fulford, Jonathan Hills, Debbie Lines, Aston Wade, Craig Winfield
Chris Williams (C), John Bowcott, Ian Burridge, Tudor Jenkins, Brian Shorney, Richard H Smith, Angharrad Walters
Dave Kibble (C), Louise Bradforth, Craig Edwards, Roger Mills, Wayne Wiseman, Wendy Wu
Simon Hathrell (C), Gary Bennett, Will Gee, Alison Maugham, Nick Mounfield, Richard M Smith
Paul Rigge (C), Bob Burnett, Lorna Dewar, Richard Harding, Ailsa Lines, Annabel McDiarmid,
Nick Parish (C), Gavin Carter, Eugene Chang, Tom Coles, Phil Cordingley, Harry Fisher, Gabrielle Higgins, Nigel Polhill
Richard White (C), Keith Aiton, Martin Beacon, Euan Burridge, James Death, Dave Gunn, Patrick Hort
Dayal Gunasekera (C), Raouf Allim, Martin Lester, Sophie McGlen, Mark van Loon, Chris Roberts, Charlie von Schmieder, John Wells, Stephen Wright
Philip Eardley (C), Mark Avery, Hugh Gilbert, Andrew Gray, Paul Hetherington, Martin Leach, Lewis Palmer, Albie Willett
Samir Patel (C), Jeff Dawson, Andy Dibben, Stephen Mulliner, Sam Murray, George Noble, Chris O'Byrne, Duncan Reeve
Roger Wood (C), Paul Castell, Alan Cottle, Phil Dunk, Mark Hamilton, David Marcus, Dominic Nunns, Peter Pullin, Ian Vincent
Mike Town (C ), Gareth Denyer, Clive Hayton, Ian Lines, John Low, Deborah Marcus, David Maugham, Chrissie Merrington, Gerald O'Brien, Peter Pullin
Joe King (C), Peter Allan, Robin Brown, Anthony Hardwicke, Richard Huxley, Andy Myers, Mark Ormerod, Joel Taylor
Jonathan Powe (C), James Brind, David Harrison-Wood, David Kendrick, Dave Trimmer, Tom Weston, David Williams
Robert Alexander (C), Pierre Beaudry, John Daniels, Jon Diamond, Liz Farrow, Brian Havill, Andrew Hobbs, Philip Mann, Tobi Savage
David Goacher (C), Kristian Chambers, Ed Duckworth, Marcus Evans, Jim Field, James Galpin, Roger Tribe
Ken Jones (C), Neal Bacon, Martin Granger-Brown, Andrew Gregory, Adrian Morris, Ian Slater, Roger Tedstone
Andrew Willis (C), Richard Dickson, John Grimshaw, Jonathan Lacey, Tim O'Donnell, Andy Smith
John Davis (C), Rod Ashwell, Robert Essler, Callum Johnson, David Warhurst, Robert Wilkinson