Bessborough beat league leaders Winchmore Hill
Bessborough beat league leaders Winchmore Hill by 30 runs on Saturday to complete a victory that ranks as one of their best in recent times.
It was some riposte after Winchmore Hill won the game between the two sides in June by some 238 runs.
On a beautiful sunny day Bessborough skipper Rohan Karkhanis unsurprisingly elected to bat first on another road of a wicket prepared by groundsman Lawrence Horsley. Opening pair Vidoosha Jayawardena (11) and Sherrick Chavda (47) were ticking along nicely at three an over when young starlet Vidoosha was caught and bowled by Siran Seevaratnam (1-23) in the eighth over.
Chavda and new bat Hemmen Jutla (49) added 83 runs in 15 overs for the second wicket before the latter was removed one short of a second half-century in two games.
Number four batsman Nirav Ghantiwala and Chavda continued to score at a brisk rate before the latter was removed by Jim Gatting (3-52) three runs shy of a half-century. Chavda’s replacement, Ian Barrie, adopted the same attacking approach with a quickfire 35 in 31 balls, while Ghantiwala became the third jug avoider by perishing soon after for 48, adjudged lbw to Gatting.
At 198 for four after 38 overs the talented all-rounder Kibreeth Rameez looked to develop an imposing total but unfortunately his tail order partners were blown away by Australian quickie Scott Burkinshaw (4-52) who uprooted the stumps of Rishi Patel (5), Will Grogan (4), Neal Patel (0) and Rohan Desai (1) in quick succession. Rameez was the last man out for 26 as Bessborough were dismissed for 238 in 51 overs.
That score was always going to need an extra special effort in the field to successfully defend against the big scoring Winchmore Hill line-up and the opposition were probably favourites with the score on 150 for four with 15 overs remaining.
Then, captain Rohan Karkhanis (3-47) ousted dangerous opener Morgan Prior for 78 and a few overs later his fellow spinner Rameez snaffled three quick wickets to turn the game on its head and leave WH on 161 for eight.
Opening pace bowler Neal Patel (2-39) was brought back for a second spell by Karkhanis and he rewarded his captain by bowling number seven bat Jack Irwin for 12. Despite the regular fall of wickets WH refused to give up on the win and the last pair of Burkinshaw (29 not out) and Jack Henson (11) were finding the boundary a little bit too easily for Karkhanis' liking.
Fortunately for Bessborough, young Kibreeth (5-93) wasn’t put out of his rhythm too much by the onslaught as he found a way past Henson’s defence with 17 balls remaining to clinch victory and his third five-fer of what has been an excellent season for him personally.
The win moved Bessborough up to eighth place in the Middlesex County Cricket League, 12 points above the relegation trap door with four games (all overs matches) remaining.
The second team extended their unbeaten run to three games with a winning draw in a very close match at Wycombe House. Overseas player Urooj Ahmed lead from the front with a well-crafted 69 as Bessborough scored 211 for eight from their 50 overs.
All results were a possibility going into the last over of the game with Wycombe House nine down. In the end the home side survived but without getting enough runs, falling four runs short of the target as they closed on 208 for nine.
Hero of the day with the ball for Bessborough was Faisal Tanoli with club-best figures of six for 46, making him the second XI’s leading wicket-taker in the league campaign so far with 13.
Bessborough’s good recent form has helped steer themselves away from the danger end of the table into a comfortable sixth place and means they cannot now be relegated as bottom side Ickenham are 46 points behind with only 40 more points on offer.
The third team, also residing in mid-table obscurity, got to within one wicket of picking up a win at Winchmore Hill, but had to settle for a losing draw. Bessborough used almost all of their 50 overs to put on 179 with Vinay Bhudia the main run-getter with 55. Thirteen-year-old Snehaan Das also showed some of his promise with a classy 33.
The home side were looking comfortable for the win but a flurry of late wickets meant that Bessborough had about 14 deliveries to try and oust the last pair. Unfortunately, Jim Clarke, who scored a fifty as an opener in the previous game between the sides, came in at number 10 and sensibly blocked out until the close of play.
The fourth team missed out on 10 vital points towards their relegation survival bid as they too couldn’t dislodege the last wicket against Harrow St Mary’s.
Batting first, Bessborough scored what looked like a below-par 150 all out from 38 overs. Top scorers were Shiv Patel (45) and Sammy Hawes (29).
However, some incredibly tight bowling restricted HSM to 136 for nine from 54 overs. R. Sharma, the last man for HSM, top scored with 32. Pick of the bowlers were Nitin Modha (4-50) and Jamie Young (3-22).
The four points collected from the winning draw was not enough to lift Bessborough off the foot of the table and realistically the team must now win at the very least three of the last four remaining games if they are to stay up.
On Sunday, Bessborough lost away to West Herts by six wickets in the Chess Valley. Stand-out performers were batsmen Vidoosha Jayawardena (53) and Tharshan Kanagaraj (63) and the skipper Ian Ridley (3-16) who picked up three more wickets to move past 50 for the season in all competitions.
© Cricket World 2016