Masonry job boosts Harpenden
HCPL Division Two (East) Hemel Hempstead Town II 71-10 (38.4) Harpenden 72-2 (18) HARPENDEN bowler Mark Mason delivered a five-star show against Hemel Hempstead Town II on Saturday. Hemel won the toss and chose to bat first, a decision that Harpenden
HCPL Division Two (East)
Hemel Hempstead Town II 71-10 (38.4)
Harpenden 72-2 (18)
HARPENDEN bowler Mark Mason delivered a five-star show against Hemel Hempstead Town II on Saturday.
Hemel won the toss and chose to bat first, a decision that Harpenden were delighted with as they planned to chase on their own wicket.
Mason struck to reduce Hemel to 0-1 and Chris Roe claimed a second wicket to leave the hosts in trouble at 15-2. Harps were determined to keep the pressure on as they sensed the chance for a fine win.
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Mason and Roe each claimed their second wickets and Hemel were soon facing a real struggle.
Swing bowler Mason caused havoc and went on to claim stunning figures, taking 5-18 with 11 maidens from his 19.4 overs. Younis praised Mason for an exceptional display. He said: "This guy Mark Mason is getting better and better by the day. I think if he had been bowling county level he would have a lot of people in trouble. He bowls a superb line and moves the ball really late.
"It was magnificent, he really can move the ball off the pitch which he did consistently. When you bowl from one end, non stop for two hours that is a really good effort. His figures were with three slips and a gully and a fast outfield, and that is special. We took some good catches which played a major role as well."
Mason was backed up superbly by Roe who claimed 2-31 and the excellent Joseph Peck who took 3-14 off seven overs on his first team debut. Younis hailed his contribution. He said: "Joseph has been bowling for us every week in the seconds and has improved line and length. He is pretty sharp. He is a tall guy and keen to get out there. He took his first wicket in his third over and suddenly realised that he is with the big boys and he can compete with them. He got one of the batsmen on the short delivery trying to pull that and our youngster (David Keenleyside) took a great catch as it was very high."
In reply, Harpenden were reduced to 2-2 with Hemel striking in the same over from Brett Penny.
Young opener William Jones belied the pressure and formed a strong combination with Pakistan overseas star Sulaiman Qadir to guide Harpenden home. Jones finished with 35 not out and Qadir on 26 not out as Harpenden sealed the win on 72-2. Manager Younis praised the contribution of young star Jones. He said: "William Jones is a very promising cricketer. He is tall and has a good approach to cricket. He is anxious to do well and focussed. We were in a sticky situation when we lost two wickets in the same over and he was put under enormous pressure. They bowled short deliveries and there was a lot of talk around him. He handled it well. It was a great experience for him. He dug in and fought it out."
Harpenden face league leaders Potters Bar away from home on Saturday. Younis believes the squad can approach the tough fixture in upbeat mood. He said: "We needed a convincing win. Potters Bar are a very good experienced team. To tackle them you have got to be mentally tough and get the plan right.