Harpenden snatch win from North Mymms
- Credit: Archant
WILL Jones heaved the ball over deep extra cover to snatch a victory for Harpenden that looked to be slipping away.
Harpenden were sitting pretty with 15 overs left needing just 70 runs but North Mymms employed two spinners and a slower seam bowler to suffocate the scoring, a tactic that worked to perfection for captain Andy Lewis.
And as a seemingly inevitable draw loomed closer Jones smashed 44 off 24 balls, including five sixes, the last of which won the game and sent the home team into celebration.
After the game Harpenden’s captain Nick Lamb told the Herts Ad the result was “a bit close for comfort.”
“There were a few players who should have won the game for us today after getting in, myself included, but when you have players like Jones down the order I always felt we could win.
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“I though the team was phenomenal.”
With clouds overhead Lamb opted to bowl first after winning the toss. His decision was vindicated as Joe Peck bowled Rhys Wynne (0) with the very first ball of the innings. And when Lewis (23) was trapped LBW by Jones in the seventh over, North Mymms were 34-2.
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Lewis’ dismissal brought Nesan Jeyaratnam to the crease to join Hamza Quyyam. In what turned out to be the most successful partnership of the day, Harpenden were left pondering what could have been as chances went begging.
In the ninth over the entire Harpenden team were convinced Jeyaratnam was run out only for the umpire to wave away their protestations.
Three overs later North Mymms reached 50 thanks to two fours through the offside for Quyyam and by the half-way point of the innings the visitors were 120-2.
Quyyam’s stay at the crease should have ended after the break after hitting a ball high into the air, but Lamb could not make the catch stick.
The pair pushed the score up to 189 before Jeyaratnam (64) was dismissed, chipping the ball to Ben Frazer at deep mid-off.
When Quyyam was finally dimissed (97) by Nick Lamb three runs shy of his century, North Mymms were 208-4 with 10 overs left. Lewis’ side were under instructions to score quickly, which they did while also losing wickets.
The final 60 balls wielded 73 runs but Will Jones (6-60) took five wickets – three in the 49th over – as the innings ended on 281.
Harpenden’s reply started in similar vein to North Mymm’s with Gregg Cooper walking for a golden duck after leaving a ball that pitched back to remove the bails. And when Blacktopp (23) was wrapped on the pads, Harpenden were 51-2.
Lamb, however, was batting confidently, hitting boundaries on his way to 48, and just as put 100 up for Harpenden and looked destined for a big score Wynne removed his stumps.
At 101-3 the hosts needed big contributions from Frazer and Mike Howard, and the pair delivered, pushing the score up over 200. It could have been very different though after Quyyam dropped Frazer before he had scored a run and Mike Howard was almost run out in the 24th over.
After Frazer hit 20 off the 32nd over, Lewis employed his spinners to frustrate Harpenden’s batsmen. But Jones, who came in after Mike Howard (43) was removed, attacked the bowling to win the game.