Frazer calls the shots

HCPL Division Two (East) Harpenden 212-6 beat Hemel Hempstead 211-5 by four wickets Harpenden had the winning feeling back after they triumphed by four wickets away to Hemel Hempstead in the HCPL Division Two East. Ben Frazer s side returned to the contro

HCPL Division Two (East)

Harpenden 212-6 beat Hemel Hempstead 211-5 by four wickets

Harpenden had the winning feeling back after they triumphed by four wickets away to Hemel Hempstead in the HCPL Division Two East.

Ben Frazer's side returned to the controlled cricket that served them so well in the first half of the season as they restricted Hemel to 211-5 off 60 overs before Frazer (89 off 67 balls) blazed away at the top of the order to set up the win.

Frazer was clearly very pleased with the day's work: "The result was huge for us and it was great to get back to winning ways.

"It was especially pleasing to chase down a tricky total on a difficult wicket. On the bowling front Chris Arnold deserved more than the wicket that he got.

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"I was also really impressed with Adam Winchester whose fielding is just amazing and his knock at the end to see us home showed what a good all round player he is."

This was a Harpenden victory forged from the iron will of early season victories due to some tight bowling from Ben Mahoney (7-0-19-0), Nick Lamb (17-2-68-0) and a solid spell from Chris Arnold (16-3-37-1).

Brett Penny (82 off 138) played well but was run-out as the prospect of a well-earned century was crossing his mind. His opening partner Hemish Ilangaratne (23 off 84) found the Harpenden bowling less easy to deal with despite helping to put on 80 for the first wicket.

Brad Moses (13-1-36-2) wheeled away and Frazer was content to let his other bowlers do the work only bringing himself on for seven overs but picking up a wicket.

Hemel captain Nick Hodgins (33no off 31) tried to force the pace but a large number of overs had been used setting a solid platform without the necessary acceleration required to set a really challenging total.

Frazer then sent himself in early with Moses (50 off 78) partly due to Nick Lamb's bowling exertions and this prompted a thunderous assault on the Hemel bowling that must have left the fielding side thinking that the match could be over in record time.

Harpenden had thrashed their way to 134 without loss from only 21 overs at a bewildering run rate when Frazer was surprisingly bowled 11 short of a ton to rank alongside any to be scored this season.

A minor collapse to 160-5 off 29 overs then ensued before Adam Winchester (19no off 52) and David Keenleyside (17 off 34) saw the team home for their eighth win of the season.

Bishop's Stortford are next to visit Harpenden Common in the match of the day this Saturday.

JOHN Kerley's match figures (47no off 54 balls & 13-4-23-3) do no justice to the impact that he had on the HARPENDEN II match away to Potters Bar II. Having lost yet another difficult toss, Harpenden were asked to bat first on an awkward wicket that demanded some early caution.

Graeme Sprowson (44 off 87) and newly promoted opener Laurie Jones (27 off 36) put on 66 for the first wicket in fair time before Harpenden took a rocky road to 152-8 as Potters Bar's bowling slowly improved to rival the level of their excellent fielding.

Wickets started to tumble as Mark Taylor (19-7-45-5) exerted plenty of pressure and Harpenden began to wonder if even 180 might prove to be beyond them as a total.

At this point Kerley, batting at number eight, strode out to take charge clouting three 4's and three 6's with clean, straight hitting that made somewhat of a nonsense of the travails of his colleagues higher up in the order.

Full bonus points were secured with a total of 203-8 being more than Harpenden dared hope for as Kerley and fast bowler Justin Savio (10* off 15) put on an unbroken 51 for the ninth wicket.

Kerley's day didn't end there as he was brought on to bowl with Potters Bar having got away to a flyer with opener David Breeze (58 off 75) looking in good form and 75-1 on the board from only 14 overs.

Kerley and Peter Makower (18-3-44-3) choked off the Bar innings so that the run chase was over by the time the score slumped to 109-6 from 34 overs with Harpenden holding several fine catches.

At 151-8 Harpenden then had several overs at the Bar tail but with no breakthrough they could be content to take the best of the bonus points.

Captain David Whiteley was quick to praise Kerley's efforts saying: "John Kerley was just fantastic ensuring that we got maximum batting points. He then dismissed PB's two best players and got us back in the game with the ball."

HARPENDEN III recovered from an appalling start of 9-3 to post a creditable 195-9 off 53 overs against Watton at Stone after being inserted on an unusually green wicket on Harpenden Common.

Ollie Chinneck (70 off 105 balls) and Simon Arnold (47 off 90) staged the main recovery as the total was upgraded from promising through satisfactory to commendably respectable in captain Simon Wade's opinion.

The continually impressive James Absalom (16-4-40-4) took a wicket with his second ball to leave the visitors 0-1 and Harpenden never looked back despite dropping some catches.

Paul Wadhams (8-1-18-2) bowled a typically accurate spell as Watton slumped to 79-5 before being all out for 135 off 40 overs.

Wade praised his team afterwards saying: "This was probably our most impressive win of the season. We showed a lot of resolve to come back from 9-3 to post a competitive total and then bowled really well to dismiss the opposition on what had become a decent batting wicket."

RICKMANSWORTH IV were unable to defend a good total of 228 as HARPENDEN V raced to 232-7 off just 41.2 overs thanks mainly to Dave Fraser (17-1-63-5) and Andy Elledge (71).