Shenley mark anniversary with MCC victory

PUBLISHED: 10:03 14 July 2011

Shenley Cricket Club.

Shenley Cricket Club.

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M.C.C. 148-9

Shenley Village 149-6

Shenley Village won by four wickets

AFTER rain ruined a potentially exciting conclusion to Saturday’s league game away at Abbots Langley, Shenley Village put on an excellent display to defeat the M.C.C. in a special match at Shenley on Sunday; played to celebrate the club?s 150th anniversary. With the Mayor of Hertsmere, Cllr. Peter Knell, in the middle of the Denis Compton Oval alongside the two captains and local MP James Clappison also in attendance, Shenley won the toss and elected to field.

Paceman Rob Laney opened the bowling and made an almost immediate breakthrough when opener Overy was caught by Lloyd Willingham for a duck from the second ball of the match. Overy’s opening partner Jamaldeen was also dismissed for a duck, this time caught behind off the bowling of James Davenall, and when Wotley was caught at mid-wicket in the fourth over the visitors were reeling at 6-3. Atkins and Salisbury then set about repairing the innings and did so with a belligerent display of defensive batting. Salisbury was at the crease for the best part of an hour before being caught behind off the economical Craig Rawlings who went for just three runs off his eight overs. Dill then joined Atkins at the crease and it seemed they had survived to the lunch break until part-time medium-pacer Laurie Willingham was brought on for the last over before lunch. Willingham induced a loose shot from Dill who was caught in the gully to leave the M.C.C. at 47-5 at the interval.

As the pitch began to dry out after overnight rain the visiting batsmen found life much easier after lunch despite the early wicket of Atkins (28). Although the scoring rate was never high Hanson (16), Gilbert (12), Arnold (27*) and top-scorer Read (37) frustrated Shenley and took the score to 148-9 after 56.5 overs when the innings was declared and tea taken. Laney finished with figures of 3-25 and Davenall 2-44.

Shenley were left with just 33 overs in which to chase down the target and suffered a potentially important blow when the big-hitting Tharic Sameem was excellently caught for 3 in the second over. Things were soon steadied by captain Dion Ebrahim, however, who put on 48 with Rob Laney (32) for the 2nd wicket and 83 with Lloyd Willingham (24) for the third wicket in an exceptional innings of 74. This took Shenley to within touching distance of the total. Despite a flurry of late wickets delaying the end of the match, a comfortable four wicket win was achieved with 3 overs to spare. Read (3-28) and Dill (2-37) were the pick of the M.C.C. bowlers. The day was a fantastic success and ended with M.C.C. captain Bob Baxter presenting Shenley chairman Ray McLennan with a plaque to commemorate the match and the club’s anniversary.

At the start of Saturday’s Division Two match Abbots Langley captain Craig Smith won the toss and elected to bat first. The Shenley bowlers began well at the start of the innings and should have dismissed the home team’s in-form Australian opener Mitch Inglis for just 4 when he was dropped at mid-on in the second over off the bowling of Craig Rawlings. Rawlings did make a breakthrough in the sixth over as Inglis’s opening partner Smith was caught behind for 11. However, it soon became apparent that the dropped catch would prove costly as Inglis dominated a partnership of 104 for the second wicket with Jay Parmar (30) which took Abbots Langley to 128-2. None of the middle-order made a real impact but Barry Warner and Jack Read supported Inglis who brought up a second consecutive hundred and then accelerated his scoring rate before being caught at long-on by Lloyd Willingham for 121. Nevertheless, at 186-6 after 47 overs Shenley had managed to put themselves back on top and felt confident of bowling the hosts out for around 200. This was thwarted by an aggressive innings of 31 not out from Blesson Ghoghe and Abbots Langley eventually reached 231-7 from their 53 overs to leave both sides going into tea reasonably satisfied with their work. Laney (3-58) was the best of the bowlers.

Tharic Sameem blasted Shenley to their usual aggressive start at the beginning of the run chase. Sameem’s 51 came from just 39 balls and ended in the 14th over shortly after he had replaced his damaged bat. This left Shenley at 88-3 with Charlie Thurston (12) and Anooj Vadgama (17) the other two wickets to have fallen. No further wickets fell before a heavy rain shower brought play to a halt after 19 overs. However, Blesson Ghoghe took the key wicket of Dion Ebrahim with the very first delivery after play resumed five minutes later; the rain having briefly abated to allow the players to return to the field. Morgan Stanley was then given out lbw for a golden duck next ball and Shenley had subsided to 108-5. Only one more run was added before the rain returned; this time more heavy and prolonged. Play was eventually abandoned as the uncovered pitch was too wet for play to restart. It was a disappointing end to a game which had been in the balance, with Shenley requiring 123 runs to win with five-wickets down but a strong battling line-up still to come. Ghoghe finished with figures of 3-12.

Abbots Langley took 15 points from the game whilst Shenley took 10. Shenley remain in seventh place in the league table and will be keen to win next week when they host 8th placed Luton Town and Indians.

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