St Albans lose at Preston despite White’s form but thirds get big win at home

St Albans' Dan Foster appeals for LBW in the match between Preston and St Albans. Picture: DANNY LOO

St Albans' Dan Foster appeals for LBW in the match between Preston and St Albans. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO

A brilliant century from Lewis Balcombe was enough to take Preston to an 88-run win over St Albans Cricket Club in Saracens Herts Cricket League Division Two A.

Having travelled north, Saints’ skipper Max Capaldi again won the toss and decided to stick with the winning formula from seven days earlier by electing to field.

The form of the home batsmen though turned that on its head.

The opening pair of Balcombe and James Stevens put on 115 for the first wicket with the former eventually reaching 111 with some sensible batting.

It could have been worse had it not been for Simon White’s economical bowling, conceding just five runs in his first six overs.

Dan Rosson also bowled admirably, claiming 3-55 by the end, but Preston still managed to get up to 245-6 in their 50 overs.

Saints were left to rue a few dropped half-chances but it was still an impressive batting performance on a decent wicket.

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However, skipper Capaldi felt 250 was an attainable target.

But what followed was not the innings they hoped for.

Only White proved to be in any sort of form with the bat and he produced an excellent knock of 82, lasting over two and a half hours and facing 144 balls, hitting seven fours and two sixes along the way.

The introduction of spin proved St Albans’ undoing though and the rest of the Saints’ line-up failed to reach double figures.

They were also up against Mark Waters who bowled an incredible 1-4 from his 10 overs, which included seven maidens.

It ended up with St Albans all out for 157, a result which drops them down to fifth.

They face Berkhamsted at Clarence Park on Saturday.

The seconds also lost but by a narrower margin, going down to Watford Town 2nds by 20 runs.

Sammy Kumar (3-54) and Amit Rajani (3-46) bowled well but Watford got to 244-9 and 69 from Michael Martin got them close but not close enough.

There was much better news for the thirds though as they beat Wheathampstead 2nds by six wickets.

Tim Winfield got three wickets and Amy Price and Dan Baylis two each as the visitors got to 209-9, Li and Akram both getting half centuries.

But it was a wonderful 98 from Harvey Scott that took Saints to victory.