Flying start for Golden Hill in ECB National Cup

JACK Penn marked his Golden Hill debut with a patient unbeaten 48 that helped steer his side to a seven-wicket home win over cross-city rivals Bedminster in the opening round of the ECB National Club Championship.

The opener, a winter recruit from Midsomer Norton, struck five fours and a six from 48 balls, and shared a first wicket stand of 68 with Sam Brooks (32) as Golden Hill chased down a target of 121 in 23 overs.

Earlier, Bedminster, who lost the toss, quickly found themselves on the back foot at 14-3 and never recovered with all six home bowlers claiming wickets, led by John Colley (2-23) and Haseeb Noori (2-24) despite the defiant efforts of skipper Matty Brewer (39 not).

Golden Hill will now be away to Cardiff who conquered Chipping Sodbury by 38 runs, Rohan Wijeratne thumping 57 from 50 (four fours, three sixes) for the South Gloucestershire outfit.

Bristol will on Sunday (1pm) entertain Bristol West Indian Phoenix with the winners away to Sandford, of Devon.

STAPLETON received a walk-over against Cranmore in the Voneus Village Cup and will now be home to Wembdon in the quarter-finals of the Somerset & Avon group on May 12.

Frocester, beaten finalists in 1993, host Frampton-on-Severn on Monday (1pm) in the Gloucestershire group with the prize a trip to Almondsbury.

Dumbleton, the 2022 champions, entertain Feckenham in the Worcestershire group on May 12.

DOWNEND are preparing to host Dings Crusaders RFC on Sunday (2pm) in the inaugural Bob Hesford Memorial Match.

Bob, who died last year, has gone into the history books as an all-time Bristol rugby great who also won 10 England caps at No 8 before enjoying a long coaching career including a highly successful stint at Dings.

And he also spent many years playing cricket for Downend as a hard-hitting batsman before supporting the club from the boundary match.

This T20 match will be in aid of bowel cancer charities.

CHIPPING Sodbury will host Irish club Leinster on Monday (1pm) in memory of Paul Reynolds who died last year at the age of 50.

Paul began his cricketing career at the South Gloucestershire club, alongside father Clive and brothers David and Mark, before moving to Dublin in 1995 where he made a towering contribution to the sport as a player, administrator and umpire who stood in some 50 internationals, the last of which was a T20 between Ireland and India in Dublin in August.

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