Doherty knock leads Redbourn II to victory

PUBLISHED: 12:20 28 May 2009 | UPDATED: 14:07 06 May 2010

Redbourn II celebrate another wicket. Photo: Dave Harris

Redbourn II celebrate another wicket. Photo: Dave Harris

Saracens Herts League Division 3 Eversholt 285-8 drew with Redbourn 285-8 Redbourn firsts were involved in a fantastic game on Saturday that went down to the very last ball. Captain Simon Osman won the toss and took a gamble by inserting the opposition

Saracens Herts League Division 3

Eversholt 285-8 drew with Redbourn 285-8

Redbourn firsts were involved in a fantastic game on Saturday that went down to the very last ball.

Captain Simon Osman won the toss and took a gamble by inserting the opposition on a high scoring ground, backing his bowlers to keep it tight and batsman to chase whatever target they were set. Eversholt's opening batsman went on the attack from the first over with runs coming from both ends as opening bowlers Ahmed Jamal and Jon Fleming struggled to find the control and penetration that they had shown in previous weeks.

Fleming did manage to take the first wicket in the sixth over with the score already on 33, courtesy of a fine stumping from Gary Sandford but was soon replaced by Chris Godfrey who despite also struggling for rhythm forced the Eversholt number three into a false shot to leave them on 75-2.

Apart from a spell in the middle of the innings when Jamal and Faisal Khan bowled well in tandem, Redbourn struggled to gain any real control as a succession of dropped catches and fielding errors allowed Eversholt's batsman to break away. Eversholt's captain Litchfield scored an excellent 117 having been dropped on 49.

At one stage they looked like scoring more than 300 but some late wickets from Geoff Tookey and Darren Bassill left them on 285 from their 53 overs.

After a wayward start, Jamal was the pick of the bowlers taking 2-74 from 18 overs.

Redbourn knew that if they were to get close to the imposing target they had to be positive from the start and Chris Yorath did not disappoint, latching on to anything short or wide and finding the boundary on a regular basis. After losing opening partner Osman with the score on 32, Yorath formed an excellent partnership with Toby Ascroft as they took the score on to 160 before Yorath, now batting with a runner due to severe cramp, fell agonisingly close to a deserved century as he was bowled for 98 from 90 balls.

Ascroft soon fell for a well made 52 before it was over to Geoff Tookey and the lower order to try to see Redbourn home.

Tookey hit his first ball for four and looked in complete control as he smashed the ball all round the ground including two straight sixes, and in partnership with Bassill reduced the target to 11 runs off eight balls before he was bowled for 67 off just 34 balls.

Redbourn needed nine off the last over but lost Bassill for 18 on the second ball and they weren't quite able to get over the finishing line. Five runs were needed off the last ball which Faisal Khan hit for four bringing the scores level meaning the thrilling match ended in a draw.

After the game captain Osman commented: "Although we're obviously disappointed to have got so close, we must take the positives from this game.

For the first time this season we underperformed in the field but the way we batted and went about our run chase was fantastic to see. Particular credit must go to Chris and Geoff who both played wonderful innings."

REDBOURN II climbed back to the top of Division 7 with a comprehensive victory over Eversholt II.

Skipper Anthony Mauder won the toss and with knowledge that Eversholt's top score this season was 155 put them in to bat.

Redbourn's Man of the Season so far, opening fast bowler Dan Thatcher, removed both openers and a wicket for Pete Cridland had Eversholt reeling at 38-3.

Eversholt's MacMillan and McDuell then had a steady fourth wicket partnership that could have taken them on to a reasonable score but a run of eight tight overs by Martin Benfield and Pete Cridland finally told as both players cracked in successive overs with score at 88.

Cridland (3-37) and Benfield (3-28) made light work of the remaining middle order, and Thatcher (4-42) returned to remove the last of the tail as Eversholt 120 all out off 38 overs.

Eversholt managed to make the run chase more difficult than Redbourn had envisaged.

Jack Dyer made a steady 15 and when he fell Jimmy Spiers entered to smash 27 off 13 balls.

However opener Dave Smith and Spiers lost their wickets in quick succession so Mauder decided to steady the innings but only achieved a 17 ball duck.

Matt Cramer followed shortly after to the same shot that had been his demise the week before.

Nerves were buzzing until Jamie Doherty, in his first game of the season, bludgeoned 52 from 37 balls to win the match with five wickets down and 28 overs gone.

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