Guernsey Press

Guernsey defy rankings to win T20I series against Germany

An inspired display from former skipper Josh Butler helped Guernsey defy the ICC T20I rankings and complete a 2-1 series victory over Germany yesterday.

Josh Butler (left) made 87 to record Guernsey's biggest individual score in T20 internationals, as well as setting a new record island partnership of 152 with GH Smit for the first wicket. (Picture by Rob Thomson)

Butler combined with GH Smit to put on an opening stand of 152 before Luke Bichard, Adam Martel and Tom Nightingale impressed the ball in a 10-run victory defending 172.

‘We’re very happy to get the win – some of the bowling was fantastic, we batted well and from a fielding perspective it was one of the best performances we have had,’ said Guernsey director of cricket Jeremy Frith.

‘I have known many of these players since they were kids, so I know the quality they have, and this win is not a surprise to me.

‘What is a surprise to me is that the group are surprised they won the game, because this is a very good team who are capable of getting these positive results.’

Guernsey endured a tough start to the series on Monday as Germany won game one comprehensively, but the Greens responded well in the second match later that day, winning a last-ball thriller to level the series.

Yesterday’s decider saw Butler, who made 59 in game two, continue his fine form as he dominated the strike early on to help Guernsey reach 50 without loss from the first seven overs.

  • Listen to a full interview with new Guernsey captain Matt Stokes following their Germany win on the latest Guernsey Press Sport Podcast

The opener began to raise the tempo and he brought up his second consecutive 50 from 38 balls.

GH Smit, a late replacement for the injured Luke Le Tissier, was initially more sedate, but managed to turn up the heat midway through the innings.

The 100 partnership came in the 12th over and Butler surpassed his previous T20I high score of 65.

It seemed as if Guernsey were on for a huge score with both batsmen well settled at the crease, but Germany began to fight back and stemmed the flow of boundaries.

They broke through at the end of the 18th, Butler going for 87 from 67 balls, which included five sixes and four fours.

Smit also reached a fine half century before falling for 56 off 46 balls with four fours and a six.

Nightingale and Martel were both dismissed throwing the bat in the final over.

Germany started quickly in their reply, but a brilliant stumping from Alex Bushell off Dane Mullen removed Shahid Afridi and Bichard was next to pick up a wicket as he removed Talha Khan for a second-ball duck.

Venkatraman Ganeson built a partnership of 47 with Mubashir, but when the skipper was dismissed by Martel it sparked a middle-order collapse as Martel picked up another in the same over, before Sachin Gangagreddy was run out for one and Nightingale bowled Fayaz Nasseri for a golden duck.

Germany needed 99 with nine overs and four wickets remaining, but it was not quite over yet.

Muslim Ashraf began to tee off alongside Ahmed Wardak and the pair’s powerful hitting reduced the requirement to 38 off four overs.

Nightingale would get the big wicket for Guernsey to break up the partnership as Wardak went, well caught by Ben Ferbrache for 29, then Bichard got his second to dismiss Zahid Zadran.

Ashraf’s impressive display was eventually brought to an end by David Hooper, putting an end to Germany’s hopes of victory as Guernsey won the match by 10 runs.

The result sees Guernsey rise three places to 39th in the ICC rankings and Germany fall one spot to 34th.

The Sarnians play two 50-over matches against the Netherlands A over the next two days.