Stowe cricketers enjoy fine start

Darren Gough
Darren Gough
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STOWE 1st XI have enjoyed their best start to a cricket season for many years.

Out of ten matches played, nine have been won outright with convincing wins over Oundle, Uppingham, Bradfield College, Bucks U17’s, Bedford Modern and Abingdon. Including the pre-season tour to Dubai, where Stowe won every match, the team enjoyed a 14 match winning streak, which is a school record. The 1sts have also made it through to the last 16 of the national Twenty/20 competition where they will take on Wellington after half term.

Two of the team, Alastair Birkby and Ben Duckett, have made their debuts for the Northants 2nd XI and Duckett is also part of the England U16/17 squad which will play a series of internationals later in the summer.

The pair broke the schools opening partnership record when they put on 221 together against Bedford Modern School. Another young player – Liam Gough (son of ex-England player Darren pictured) will also make his debut for the Northants Academy during half term.

The junior cricketers are also going well with U15 George Jackman scoring 178 not out against Oundle and his team mate - James Hill - scoring 146 against Rugby. Both players are part of the Northants U15 squad. In total there have been seven centuries and six five wicket hauls to date – with great performances across the board.

It is a tough second half of the season with matches against the likes of Cheltenham College, Radley, Bedford and Oakham but Stowe are set for a record breaking season at all levels.

Stowe hosted Northants 2nd XI during this Bank Holiday week. During the summer holidays the school is once again running the Darren Gough Sports Academy in July and August. Gough will be coaching every day of the course, which is aimed at nine to 13-year-olds. For more details, go to the website at www.stowe.co.uk/events/darren-gough-sports-academy.