Radlett survive Letchworth scare

Joe Cooke hits one straight back down the wicket

Joe Cooke hits one straight back down the wicket - Credit: Archant

Radlett survived their biggest scare of season so far to narrowly beat Letchworth Garden City by four runs at Whitethorn Lane.

Defending 271, Jono McLean’s side managed to stem the flow of runs just in time to hang on to victory.

Radlett waltzed past Sawbridgeworth in their opening day behind their powerful batting line-up and were looking to reproduce that performance on Saturday, so McLean elected to bat first, hoping to expose Letchworth’s inexperienced bowling attack.

Fraser Crawford, who survived a sharp slip chance early on off Andy Newland, and Kabir Toor put on an opening stand of 67 before the former was caught by Taylor Browne for 33.

The second-wicket stand was just as impressive as the first, with McLean joined Toor adding 56 before the opener was run out for 46. McLean and Shane Burger departed soon after and Radlett with 144-4.

Off-spinner Will Aitkenhead then had Chad Barrett caught by skipper Richard Barclay and when Rob Clements fell to Barclay, the visitors were 218-6 with five overs left.

A late flurry from Joe Cooke (49*) and Tom Jenkins (25) helped them finish on 271-7 off their 50 overs.

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Tom Simmons (36) and Navin Seneviratne (31) got Letchworth off to a good start in reply with an opening stand of 76 before the introduction of Toor’s leg spin. He accounted for Simmons and almost immediately Seneviratne was brilliantly run out by a direct hit.

Will Aitkenhead and Sam Booth both reached 20 before they fell to brilliant catches by Clements and with Matt Bridge. And when Ben Cottenden and Darren Curry went cheaply, Letchworth looked out of the game at 173-7.

However, Browne and Richard Barclay had other ideas. In a whirlwind stand of 88 they got the target down to 20 off two overs. Radlett finally got the breakthrough with 11 runs needed when Barclay skied Neil Lederman to be caught for 27.

Browne, who had by now struck four huge sixes, still looked likely to win the game, but he was run out trying to keep the strike with four runs needed, leaving last man Newland. Needing four off the last two balls, Radlett bowled consecutive dot balls to take the points.