Slideshow: Middlesex pair Berg and Toor blast Radlett to sensational win
HCPL Division One Oxford 240-9 (66) Radlett 242-4 (42) GARETH Berg extended his sensational run spree and Shane Burger picked up a fantastic five wicket haul as Radlett beat reigning champions Oxford to close the gap on the top three in the Home Counties
HCPL Division One
Oxford 240-9 (66) Radlett 242-4 (42)
GARETH Berg extended his sensational run spree and Shane Burger picked up a fantastic five wicket haul as Radlett beat reigning champions Oxford to close the gap on the top three in the Home Counties Premier League Division One.
On a damp and overcast day skipper Burger won the toss and decided to take advantage of conditions and have a bowl. It proved a good decision after he edged Oxford captain Jason Harrison to keeper Jenkins off the third ball of the day.
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The total was 43 when the next wicket fell as Rob Watson had Stuart Laudat caught in the covers by Steve Lowe.
After that wickets seemed to tumble at regular intervals, Burger being the chief destroyer with good swing and bounce. Oxford were really struggling at 62 for 6 but a fantastic seventh wicket partnership of 87 runs put them back on track.
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Heath Paytner was introduced into the attack and toiled away bowling very patiently with good lines and length. He was rewarded when he broke the threatening partnership when he trapped Evans in front for a well played 68.
Paytner went on to claim the next two wickets for figures of 3 for 51 in 20 overs. Burger picked up his fifth wicket of the innings when he removed Francois Vainker caught behind by Jenkins. Burger finished with figures of 5 for 55 in 20 overs.
Oxford managed to bat out their allotted 66 overs, leaving Radlett just 54 overs to chase a total of 240.
Radlett's chase got off to the perfect start with openers Kabir Toor and debutant Anish Patel putting away bad balls and rotating strike at regular intervals. It was the first time Radlett have managed to put any sort of opening partnership together this season and it lasted until Patel got a ball that kept low to trap him in front of the stumps with the score on 121.
Lowe joined Toor at the wicket and together they took the score to 135 before Toor hit a full toss down to deep square leg's throat for a very well played 84.
As one Middlesex player walked off another walked on, with Berg fresh from scoring more than 300 runs during the previous weekend carried on where he left off. Boundaries were flying off his big wide bat and it almost seemed too easy for him. He smashed a fantastic 83 not out off just 56 balls and ensured Radlett the victory, their first ever win over Oxford. Radlett reached the total with 12 overs to spare and six wickets in hand, a truly professional performance and one which keeps them in the hunt for the title.
In Division Two of the Saracens Herts League Radlett II got back to winning ways with some spectacular batting to defeat hosts Welwyn Garden City II.
WGC won the toss, and chose to bat on a good track with a fast outfield. Ed Tucker, son and grandson of former RCC members Richard and Reg Tucker, opened with a brisk 22 off 18 balls. He was then stumped smartly by Arjun Luthra while trying to drive Stuart Browne.
Following the dismissal of Tucker the game entered a more serene stage with scores of 65 and 51 from Daniel Beynon and Matthew Hill taking WGC to 98 for 1 at the halfway stage. After drinks, a reshuffle in the bowling saw spin duo Haydn Smith and Jim Chaudry tie the batsman down despite the excellent surface.
Richard Cameron held two fine catches as Smith picked up 3-66 and Chaudry collected 1-50. The ever miserly Brown picked up 1-19 off 10 overs but WGC posted a competitive 231-5 off 53 overs.
Jim Chaudry and Simon Randall opened the RCC innings, needing an average run
rate of nearly five-an-over from the available 47 overs.
Chaudry was beaten by a fine Tucker catch at the end of the ninth over, for a brisk 22 (including five fours) in 30 balls and when David Robinson fell unfortunately chasing a wide ball Radlett's reply was stuttering at 37 for 2.
Robbo's wicket brought John Barr to the crease and immediately the 18-year-old took charge of the coring rate. His first 50 came off 43 balls including some imperious driving
and his second 50 took just 39 balls as he proceeded to smash the WGC
bowling to all parts of the pretty Digswell Park ground.
At the other end, Simon Randall, promoted from the third team for his undefeated ton the previous week supported by batting carefully and correctly. He accelerated his scoring rate towards the end of the game, reaching 68 not out from 139 balls.
With eleven balls remaining, RCC still needed 14 runs to win but any nerves
in the dressing room were soon settled as the brutal Barr completed a splendid
innings by hitting 14 runs off the next three balls, giving RCC victory by eight wickets. Radlett reached the total on 232-2 with Barr not out on 127 off just 104 balls including 14 fours and five sixes.