SHORT MAT BOWLING ASSOCIATION
For the first time in their history, Hertfordshire qualified for the main knockout competition of the Inter County Championship A Division. Buckinghamshire needed to beat Hertfordshire by at least 6 points in the final qualifying group match to snatch second place but fell 2 points short. They can count themselves slightly unlucky as they won four of their six group games. The key to Hertfordshire's success was a big home win against Surrey and pushing their opponents close in the lost matches. Two of Hertfordshire's losses were by the minimum margin of 2 points.
The season started well with two home wins. The third game away at Northamptonshire ended in a 12 point defeat but could have been much closer with at least two of the games being lost on the last end and the bonus points being very closely contested. The reverse fixture with Northamptonshire was drawn. Hertfordshire lost a close match away to Surrey and the qualifying campaign finished with the Bucks match at High Wycombe.
Hertfordshire were probably massive underdogs in the knockout rounds but started with a comfortable 8 point win over Oxfordshire. The adventure came to an end at the quarter final stage against a very strong Somerset team.
It is always going to be difficult to qualify in the top two places of Hertfordshire's group because it is so closely contested. The second, third and fourth teams in the 2013-14 group were separated by only 4 points. Hopefully, Hertfordshire can build on this year's success with another good showing in next year's competition.