St Albans pick up third win of the season

ST ALBANS picked up their third win of the season at Clarence Park on Saturday against Flitwick.

The hosts could not believe their luck when Flitwick chose to bat first, and they duly dismissed their opposition for 126 in only 37.3 overs. Charlie Smith bowled excellently, with accuracy and significant movement, both in the air and off the pitch.

Smith finished with figures of 3-33, and his opening partner, Richard O’Toole, also took a wicket. There was no let off for Flitwick as both Jim Chaudry and Martin Jones found their rhythm instantly, as reflected in their figures of 3-34 and 3-24 respectively.

Needing 127 for victory, St Albans were led by their talismanic opening batsman, Mo Mansoor, who made 54 off 39, including eleven fours.

However, other St Albans’ batsman struggled, and at 102-6 it was left to skipper Jones and returning Gareth Oakley to guide St Albans home to a four wicket victory.

The 2nds had a torrid day against an impressive Sawbridgeworth team, suffering a 10-wicket loss. Skipper Carveth elected to bat on a seemingly good-looking deck for batting but wickets fell regularly, with only Mike Curtis and Aaron Jones making a significant impression in the scorebook out of the side’s batsman.

A late cameo from Jonny Hall and Rupert Warren for the last wicket helped St Albans up to 133 all out, but the opposition chased down the total easily.

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St Albans 3 XI faced Great Gaddesden in a vital relegation clash, their opposition choosing to bat first. Gaddesden showed admirable resolve amongst the openers, but struggled later on a sluggish wicket, with wickets falling regularly, most notably at the hands of Jack Ypey (4-25) and stand-in captain, Andrew Walker (3-22).

St Albans needed 161 for victory in 48 overs, and started excellently, with Steve Ferguson making a good-looking 34. However, in a span of nine overs, St Albans fell from 50-1 to 57-6 as the middle order crumbled.

Furnival and Hicks built an excellent partnership, with brilliant running between the wickets. Nevertheless, when Furnival was removed for a well worked 53, it left St Albans on 150-8 and 11 runs short.