Wednesday, 16 June 2021

Balchin and Cole dig in to earn side first league win

HURLEY secured their first Division 2 victory of the season on Saturday as they beat WRAYSBURY 2nds by three wickets

HURLEY secured their first Division 2 victory of the season on Saturday as they beat WRAYSBURY 2nds by three wickets at Shepherds Lane.

The below-par Wraysbury score of 98 all out was due in large part to a lively opening spell from the Lane end by captain Ross Brown (4-21), with support from the River end by Jonathan Langlands (4-41).

Hurley made hard work of chasing down the modest target due to good bowling and fielding from the visitors, a couple of poor shots, and some vociferous appealing.

Captain Brown invited Wraysbury to bat. The first breakthrough came as early as the third over as a Brown delivery found the inside edge of Pav Midha’s bat with unfortunate consequences.

Taran Singh departed soon after in identical fashion and Deep Singh was out having played a thick edge to Steve Taylor at gully.

An lbw award by the Wraysbury umpire and a juggled catch at mid-on by Parvinder Hunjan saw the visitors collapse but a counter attack led by Majid Kazi saw the score lifted to just short of a batting point.

In reply Deep Singh opened the bowling from the River end in tandem with Kazi.

Phil Ridgeway scored a cover drive but was then adjudged to have edged to slip. Varun Sharma and Denis Day also fell to the command of the umpire’s finger.

David Simoes and Ross Brown both fell to catches and with Paul Todd retiring hurt, Hurley were stuttering in what should have been an easy task.

Trevor Balchin and Mike Cole steadied the ship and saw Hurley home on 99-7.

HURLEY 2nds held on to draw their Division 3 match away to DENHAM 2nds.

Mike Walton won the toss and put the hosts into bat first on a slightly soft wicket.

Although the variable bounce caused the batsmen a few problems, Jeff Simpson and Stuart Payne survived against the opening attack of Scott Taylor and Dave Pollitt.

The opening partnership had progressed to 97 when Simpson played across the line to Dave Walton and became the first of four lbw victims.

Imran Arshad followed up with the wicket of Payne, an away swinger finding the left-hander’s outside edge to give Walton a comfortable catch behind the stumps.

Arshad’s next delivery proved too good for Denham skipper Dave Tang, swinging in to take the off stump.

Ambrose Treacy and JK Bhagodia set about rebuilding the innings with a partnership of 57. Another flurry of wickets saw the hosts collapse to 159-7, with Walton picking up 3-1 in eight deliveries.

Bhagodia got in a tangle trying to hit over the top, only his back leg prevented the ball hitting middle stump, giving the umpire an easy decision. The reintroduction of Pollitt saw the end of Treacy, caught by the keeper off a bottom edge.

Paras Mehta only made two before stepping right across his wicket to become Walton’s third lbw dismissal while Pete Schembri did exactly the same thing to his first delivery.

Hemmen Mehta and GS Atwal added 23 for the eighth wicket before Walton struck again having Mehta stumped by a distance as he advanced down the track and clean bowling Akbari as the hosts finished on 192-9.

Needing barely a fraction above four runs an over for victory, the chase was well within Hurley’s range and an opening partnership of 50 between Clive Williams and Colin Ainger set them on the right course.

Williams’ lack of footwork saw him push at a wider delivery from Treacy, with Tang picking up the catch at gully.

Arshad failed to trouble the scorers, this time Bhagodia provided the safe hands at gully to give Simpson his first of two wickets. Yasir Ali hit Simpson down the ground for a straight six and a couple of boundaries off Treacy before driving in the air back to Treacy who held on to a catch that turned the game Denham’s way.

Only two more runs were added for the loss of Ainger, another catch at gully, this time by Hemmen Mehta.

At 81-4 after 20 overs, Hurley were still up with the run rate but the flurry of wickets called for a rebuilding exercise and only 14 more were added in 11 overs.

Hemmen Mehta then took the game away from Hurley, trapping Morgans lbw and bowling Jeff Dawson.

With the run rate now climbing above a run a ball, hopes of victory were receding leaving the draw as the only option for Hurley.

Taylor showed good technique against Mehta to keep out 15 deliveries before being beaten. Morgans batted for half an hour to make eight runs, only falling five deliveries from the end of the innings and ensuring that his side not only saved the game but also gained another batting point.

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