THE result of last Saturday’s 721 run thriller at High Wycombe, which Slough clinched on the
THE result of last Saturday’s 721 run thriller at High Wycombe, which Slough clinched on the penultimate ball, has propelled Henley to a clear top spot in the league. They stand on a maximum 100 points, with High Wycombe on 89 and Banbury on 86.
This Saturday Henley host Tring Park at the Brakspear Ground, the match starting at 11am since it is the first of the timed matches, a longer form of the game than the 50:50 format (120 overs, with the side batting first able to face as many as 64) where draws are a possible outcome.
Henley will be seeking a sixth consecutive win, whereas Tring will be hoping to improve on their disappointing record so far this season. They have won both their away games at Oxford and Harefield but lost all three of their home matches, against Banbury, High Wycombe and last week Reading, despite scoring 245 runs.
Last season, Tring beat Henley at their place in a rain-shortened match, but Henley won comfortably in the return, a game that featured a memorable run-out by Brock of Tring’s Australian overseas player Duncan Maddinson.
Opener Maddinson is averaging 49 this season, including a 91 not out at Harefield. He has taken over as skipper from Will Jones, whose slot at number three has gone to new signing Shelvin Gumbs, previously with Burslem in the North Staffordshire and South Cheshire Premier League.
The other opener, keeper Robin Pritchard, is also dangerous and was their leading scorer last season with 493 runs; he hit 72 last week against Reading. Bucks county captain, Michael Payne, who bats at five, is averaging 81 including 76 last week; he came fourth in the League’s batting averages last season at 43, and also bowls.
Simon Stanway leads the bowling attack. Last season he took 31 wickets at an average of 16 and was one of four in the league (including Afridi) who took seven wickets in a match.
Henley have their own firepower. In-form opener Roberts has already hit 290 runs this season at an average of 73, followed by Jake Doran with 204 at 68. Zippy Ashraf is averaging more than 25 with the bat in addition to taking nine wickets at 15.