Harpenden clinch triple crown in ‘formidable year’
- Credit: Archant
Harpenden Cricket Club wrapped up one of their most memorable years on record with the 2nd and 5th teams both becoming champions of their respective divisions, adding to the league success of the 3rds a week earlier.
The 2nds knew they had to beat Northwood in order to be crowned champions of Saracens Hertfordshire Cricket League Division One.
So, when they had their hosts at 50-5 things were looking promising.
However, despite Tom Beasley taking 3-51, Northwood battled their way to 195 all out in the final over, setting Harpenden a target of 196.
Adam Winchester was up to the task, scoring a dominant 114 not out, and with the help of Mike Howard, Harpenden eased to the total for the loss of just three wickets down.
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It meant they finished the year with 11 wins and 405 points, 14 points clear of Hemel Hempstead in second.
Four years ago, the side finished mid-table in Division Three but four promotions later has left skipper Tom Stewart a happy man.
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He said: “It’s testament to the side that we’ve come so far in the past few years.
“We’ve managed to keep key figures, mixed with youth and experience, whilst guys coming from the surrounding teams have come in and done a great job.
“It’s great for the club to have a 2nd team so strong as it provides depth across the whole club.”
The 5ths capped off their own dominant year with a nine-wicket win over Southgate Compton clinching the Division 10B title.
And to cap off the weekend, Harpenden U17s were triumphant in the county cup, beating Letchworth with relative ease.
A target of 220 proved too much of an ask for Letchworth as they were bowled out for 112.
President Geoff Newman said: “I’ve never seen anything like it during my time at the club.
“We have come so far. From having three teams on a Saturday to now being able to getting sevens teams out is remarkable. “Nevertheless, without the volunteers that make this club tick, we’d be nowhere; they deserve a lot of credit too.
“It was an unforgettable weekend capping off what has been a formidable year.
“The future is bright, but no doubt next year will provide greater tests.”