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Owzat for young cricket champs

PUBLISHED: 11:58 18 March 2010 | UPDATED: 17:42 25 August 2010

YOUNG cricketers were crowned champions of London in a thrilling derby final at the home of cricket.

YOUNG cricketers were crowned champions of London in a thrilling derby final at the home of cricket.

Bexley emerged as winners at the indoor cricket final of the 2010 Balfour Beatty London Youth Games at Lord's on Saturday after beating rivals Bromley.

Bexley boys' team took home bronze medals after losing out in the semi-finals to Hillingdon. In the girls competition, Bexley overcame Hounslow and Greenwich on their way to the final. Bromley made a stuttering start in the first innings, losing three early wickets before rallying to 84 runs in their 10 overs.

Bexley looked in serious trouble when they were reduced to 17 for 3 and then 38 for 4. But due to a superb knock of 31 from Sakshi Sharda they sneaked home with just one wicket remaining and two balls to spare.

Team captain Lucy Poulton said: "Sakshi and I were really scared at the end. But we just said to each other 'Don't worry about it. Just go for it.' It's our first time here and we won."

Girls' team manager John Daniels said: "It was absolutely amazing to get this far, as we didn't think we would.

"I'm so proud. Two years ago we didn't even have a team. So our goal this year was to qualify for Lord's. Schools, coaches, councils, parents have all helped tremendously.

"It is fantastic for the girls to get to play at Lord's, especially at just 12-years-old, so I really hope it is something they will treasure."

An estimated 1,300 youngsters from across the city took part in the annual cricket competition.

The London Youth Games is Europe's largest annual sports event for young people. In 2009 around 47,000 kids took part in 30 sports from all 33 London boroughs.

Former participants at the London Youth Games include 2008 Beijing Olympic Gold medallists Christine Ohuruogu and cycling champ Bradley Wiggins.

Ms Ohuruogu MBE said: "The London Youth Games is where I first discovered sport on a bigger level. It completely opened my eyes to what youngsters could do.

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