Wheato slip closer to relegation zone

PUBLISHED: 11:55 13 August 2009 | UPDATED: 14:19 06 May 2010

Wheathampstead I 77 all out lost to Ickleford I 80-5 by five wickets WHEATHAMPSTEAD slipped to another bad defeat against Ickleford leaving them to face a difficult task to avoid relegation. On a surprisingly wet, green wicket at Ickleford the chances of

Wheathampstead I 77 all out lost to Ickleford I 80-5 by five wickets

WHEATHAMPSTEAD slipped to another bad defeat against Ickleford leaving them to face a difficult task to avoid relegation.

On a surprisingly wet, green wicket at Ickleford the chances of scoring big runs was always unlikely and skipper Zaf Iqbal rightly felt batting first would allow the batsmen to post some kind of defendable score.

However, the Wheato batsmen, who have been off form for much of the season, collapsed to 77-10 after only 26 overs. The Ickleford pair of C Batt (6-33) and Wheatley (4-32) bowled all bar one over and only Mark Winchester with 21 and last man J Ghulum (13) threatened to take the attack to the Ickleford pace bowlers.

Although Wheato took five wickets with Iqbal (3-30) and Ghulum (2-20), it could have been better had two caught behind decisions gone the visitors' way. It was not to be and a comfortable five wicket win followed in 25.3 overs.

THE in-form Wheathampstead II continued their excellent run with a thrilling win over Botany Bay.

Batting first, Wheato progressed smoothly to 201 with Kevin Barrow's patient innings for 54 and a matched score of 54no from Peter Griffiths forming the centrepiece of the scoreline allowing a declaration after 51 overs. There was early success as opening bowlers Dilkes and McEwen each took a wicket to leave Botany Bay at 32-2. However, when Mitra and Baneerjee came together, the game took on a different complexion.

Runs flowed freely and both batsmen progressed to their half centuries in quick time.

However, skipper Tim Kiek held his nerve and continued with the dual spin attack.

Dabare made the breakthrough when Mitra was well caught low down at deep mid wicket by Harry Swan for 52.

Banerjee was soon out for 51 and, although a hard hit 37 from McCabe looked worrying for a time, wickets tumbled at the other end and the spinners claimed four wickets each and Botany Bay ended 30 runs short on 170-10.

l On Sunday Wheathampstead fielded two XIs but both matches where lost. At home a score of 200-7 (T Kiek 63no, D Arbuthnott 41) was chased down by Ebury Strollers due to a stunning 130no by T Hussain. Nick Winchester bowled as well as anyone with his 8-2-32-1 spell.

In the away game at Old Owens, Wheato only scored 157 runs (A Robbins 40, R Saunders 24no) and Old Owens won by four wickets with Sibley top scoring on 34. Jack Stevens performed well with his off spin for 14-3-42-3.

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