OAs take positives from progress despite defeat
PUBLISHED: 13:17 23 May 2011
Rourke hits 60th half-century in OAs colours
SHL Division 3
Old Albanian 210-8 Totteridge Millhillians 214-7
Totteridge won by three wickets
AN absorbing Division 3 game at Rowley Lane was won by the hosts, Totteridge Millhillians, as they defeated OAs by three wickets.
OAs were put into bat on a grassy pitch, and withstood some testing early bowling to compile their highest score of the season, 210 for 7 off 53 overs. The foundation was laid by a pugnacious opening partnership of 95 in 33 overs between first XI League debutant David Hughes (28) and David Rourke, who marked the 25th anniversary of his first XI debut with 62 - his 60th half century for OAs.
Chris Dobson (30), skipper Tom Preest (35) and Henry Scott (17) accelerated OAs through the final 20 overs at just under a run per ball, to secure maximum batting points.
Totteridge’s reply commenced at an incredible rate, as lusty and unreserved bat-swinging saw 55 taken from the first five overs. Another 1st League debutant, Jack Burman (2-32) dismissed both openers to end the rapid opening stand; from thereon in, the game and the run-rate ebbed and flowed as Totteridge lost wickets at regular intervals. Perry Hall bowled a vigorous and unjustly unrewarded spell, while spinners Preest (4-60) and Dobson (1-54) posed problems throughout. At 181-7, OAs became marginal favorites, but a couple of missed half chances proved crucial as Totteridge, anchored by Safraz Ahmed’s undefeated 40, held their nerve to triumph.
OAs took 17 points, and much heart, from a much-improved performance.