Gyan Rhodes takes hat-trick in OA win

Alf Rehman plays defensive

Alf Rehman plays defensive - Credit: Archant

GYAN RHODES took a hat-trick to end Totteridge Millhillians’ innings and hand Old Albanian their second win in the Chess Valley Sunday League.

Having beaten Harpenden 2s by 47 runs seven days previously, skipper Alf Rehman fancied his side to post an insurmountable total for a second week running and chose to bat first.

The innings could not have started worse for OA as Rhodes responded slowly to Robbie Goldstone’s call for a quick single and was run out for a duck in the second over.

Rhodes’ dismissal was followed by a solid second-wicket stand of 77 as Robert Goldstone played some attractive strokes and Victor Stairmand settled in. The stand ended when Goldstone (35) drove to mid-on, but Stairmand kept up the momentum with trademark on-drives and reached his 50 in 78 balls.

In the meantime Nial Parkash and Mohammed Zahir perished off consecutive balls from visiting skipper Steve Lyall’s drifters, and Nial’s brother Arun narrowly avoided the hat-trick as the ball deflected off his pad to the keeper rather than off his bat.

Arun then made a breezy 16 off 19 balls, and was followed shortly after to the pavilion by Stairmand who fell victim to a fine running catch on the mid-wicket boundary by Shrutarth Rajani in the course of which the fielder damaged a finger and consequently was unable to bat.

Some strong blows from Saeed Khan were the highlight of the rest of the innings, which ended on 185.

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In the reply, with opener Rajani sidelined, the visitors were immediately in trouble as Stairmand took wickets in his second, third and fourth overs to leave the score at 23-3.

This rapidly became 32-5 as Zahir’s excellent and miserly spell from the other end brought him two wickets.

Andrew Shoreman and skipper Lyall added 76 for the only meaningful partnership of the innings. Lyall was fortunate early on after being comprehensively bowled by Nial Parkash when on eight and the score 59-5 only for a no-ball to be called.

But once he was beaten by the spin of Simon Wakeling, the innings ended in a rush by Rhodes. First Andrew Shoreman (26) was caught and bowled before Christian Plows and Jamie Hammatt were both beat by Rhodes’ offspin.