Newport Win SWPL T20 Trophy

April 2024

Newport Cricket Club Win SWPL T20 Trophy

The 2024 cricket season began for Newport Cricket Club by hosting the 2023 SWPL Finals Day, 
which had been postponed from last year due to the torrential rain at the end of last season.

Four teams had qualified for the Final’s Day, with Newport playing Bridgend and Swansea 
playing Pontarddulais in their respective semi finals.

Both games turned into straightforward victories with Newport beating Bridgend by 67 runs. 
Newport 147- 4 (20 overs) Morgan Bevans continuing his early season run of good form with 65no.
Bridgend 80-10 (Kameel Sahabdeen 3-17, Prabath Perera 2-13 and Muji Ilyas 2-10).

With Swansea convincingly beating Pontarddulais the stage was set for an intriguing Final. Swansea 
won the toss and elected to bat, a decision they may have rued as they fell to 38-5 off 8 overs, with 
Michael Clayden and Tegh Sehgal claiming 2 wickets a piece. Two further wickets by young 
Kameel Sahabdeen saw Swansea slump to 88-7 off 16 overs. Any chance of an easy win was dashed 
as Adam Sylvester smashed a quick 30no in just 14 balls and the Swansea total looked a lot more 
respectable at 130-8 off the allotted 20 overs.      
 Sehgal 3-17, Clayden 2-9 and Sahabdeen 2-27 doing the damage.

Newport lost an early wicket in reply, but Harry Friend and Mike Clayden held things together posting 
50-1 off 8.4 overs. The two took the Newport score to 63-2 before Clayden (38) was out, well caught 
on the boundary edge by Osian Webber. Another wicket soon followed at 71-3 and a tight finish was 
always on the cards. However, captain Muji Ilyas, who had orchestrated the fielding side of the game 
expertly, began his innings on the offensive, and with Harry Friend playing sensibly at the other end, 
picking up singles and the occasional boundary, a match winning partnership was beginning to form. 
At 129-3 with just 12 runs needed to win, Newport were in the driving seat, but 2023 League Champions 
Swansea were determined not to lie down. With 6 runs needed to win off the last over, the game was turned 
on it’s head with just 2 singles and 3 dot balls bowled by Asim Hameed. This meant Newport’s Harry Friend (48no) 
required 4 to win off the final ball of the match. With the field well spread, tensions were high as Friend 
smashed the final ball back past the bowler, all along the ground, bisecting Deep Mid Off and Deep Mid On 
on the boundary edge, to win the game for Newport. A shot dreams are made of, to clinch a 7 wicket win 
and to win the SWPL T20 Trophy for the 3


time (previous wins coming in 2016 and 2018). 
Friend finished on a run a ball, match winning innings of 52no, whilst Ilyas finished 28no off 23 balls. 
A great start to the 2024 season for Newport.

SWPL T20 Champions (2023) - Newport CC

Captain Muji Ilyas Presented with the SWPL T20 Trophy by SWPL Chairman Paul Morgan