Thursday, 17 June 2021

Reigning champions to prove tough test

FOLLOWING a run of 24 consecutive matches over last season and this, Henley Cricket Club’s first team

FOLLOWING a run of 24 consecutive matches over last season and this, Henley Cricket Club’s first team eventually lost a game to the effects of the weather at Banbury last Saturday.

The umpires declared the White Post Road ground unfit for play at the home of the current Home Counties Premier League Division 1 leaders and the match was subsequently abandoned without a ball being bowled.

Six points each were awarded to both Banbury and Henley. Meanwhile High Wycombe and Finchampstead were garnering maximum points, respectively routing Great and Little Tew and Reading whose 140 all out owed everything to an unbeaten 101 by Martin Andersson.

This leaves things tight at the top of the Division 1 table with Banbury still out front on 116 points followed by Wycombe on 111 and  Finchampstead and Henley on 109 each, whilst  Burnham lurk not far behind with 93.

All of which makes tomorrow’s (Saturday, 11am) encounter at the Brakspear Ground against High Wycombe all the more significant.

Last season’s champions have not had it all their own way this year losing to Burnham and Banbury in the 50 over format and suffering an abandonment against Finchampstead in their pre-Coetzee incarnation. High Wycombe have beaten Tring and Great and Little Tew on the last two weekends and look to be running into a good vein of form.

Wycombe are a very strong side, the backbone of which comprises some experienced and quality players such as Nathan Hawkes, ex-Surrey man James Benning and former Northants all-rounder Gavin Baker.

Paul Sawyer made a return to first team cricket last year and brings a wealth of guile and experience to the side whilst Garth Davson, who originates from Tzaneen Limpopo and who is trying to break into first class cricket, can be relied on for a hatful of runs.

Henley are likely to be unchanged from the side that lost to Finchampstead and travelled to Banbury.

Elsewhere tomorrow in the Thames Valley League, Henley 2nds travel to Chiswick and Whitton, Henley 3rds entertain Chiswick and Whitton 2nds at Nettlebed while Henley 4ths travel to Thatcham Town 3rds. All these matches start at 1pm.

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