WEST Reading were crowned champions of the Keith Mitchell Memorial Cup following a dramatic nine-run victory against Purley on Thames on Thursday.

Potters skipper George Wheeler chose to bowl in a 12-eight-ball-overs-per-side final, but that proved a questionable decision as Rehan Akram and Adam Davidson shared a 62-run opening stand.

However, skipper Davidson was castled by a superb James Bozarth yorker for 15, and Akram’s enterprising innings of 51 was then ended when he was stumped off Patrick Allen as Purley fought back.

Kazam Kamal and Taskeen Ahmed were both run out as the Potters’ tightened the screw, and with Allen (3-17) claiming two more victims, West Reading had to settle for a seemingly under-par 106-7.

However, they made a fine start when youngster Asim Hussain pulled off a magnificent catch at cover point, Chris Priestley the unfortunate victim off the bowling of Adeel Razaq.

The opening bowler also accounted for the prize scalps of Wheeler and Allen, and with Bozarth run out attempting to come back for a second, Wests had put themselves on top.

With the rate continuing to climb, Purley were left needing 16 off the final over, but Atiq Javed held his nerve to only go for six as the Potters were restricted to 97-7.

Akram was named man-of-the-match for his dynamic knock and fine performance as wicket keeper.