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Bessborough brought back down with a bump

Ian Barrie scored 67 before Bessborough were beaten by Barnes
Ian Barrie scored 67 before Bessborough were beaten by Barnes
©Bessborough CC
Nitin Modha took seven wickets for Bessborough 2nds
Nitin Modha took seven wickets for Bessborough 2nds
©Bessborough CC
Bessborough U15s
Bessborough U15s
©Bessborough CC

After the euphoria of last week’s first win in eight, Bessborough’s 1st XI were brought crashing back down to earth, and dragged deeper into the Middlesex County Cricket League relegation mire, by a humbling 125-run loss at home to Barnes.

Having been put in to bat, the visitors were ticking along nicely until spinner Sherrick Chavda (4-109) picked up two wickets in the 20th over to have them 64 for two.

Kibreeth Rameez (1-64) dislodged another fairly quickly, but thereafter Barnes’ opener James Alder (108) and Edward Humphreys (62 not out) went through the gears in a fourth-wicket stand of 106 before Humphreys and John Olive (57 not out) plundered another 83 runs allowing a declaration on 258 for five in 50 overs.

U15s make it through to quarter-finals

Bessborough’s Under 15s produced a brilliant performance on Monday evening at Headstone Manor to defeat Old Elizabethans in a play-off match in the Middlesex County League U15 knock-out.

They scored 149 for four in 20 overs, including an excellent partnership of 51 runs in the last four overs between Vidoosha Jayawardena (72 not out) and Retesh Jesuthasan (28 not out). Earlier in the innings Rebant Ruparel added a very useful 30.

Following a thorough warm-up by elder colt Ravi Vyas the U15s bowled and fielded really well, restricting Old Elizabethans to 85 for four in their 20 overs. Pick of the bowlers were Ajan Sivakumar (3-1-3-0) and Vidoosha with two for 12 in 3 overs.

Next up, Bessborough U15s will travel to play Ealing in the Quarter-Finals with the date to be confirmed soon.

Bessborough’s top order offered only a tame response with three wickets falling in the first nine overs. Number five Ian Barrie (pictured) tried to restore some pride with a gutsy 67 but the side eventually folded for only 133 inside 42 overs.

This was the seventh occasion out of 13 league matches that the side has been dismissed for less than 150 runs, not including a losing draw against South Hampstead when they held on at 123 for nine.

Captain Rohan Karkhanis must now be seriously thinking about changing the line-up as they enter the final five games of the season with their hard-won MCCL status very much on the line.

A win for bottom-placed North London means that Bessborough only have a wafer-thin three-point advantage as they travel to runaway league leaders Highgate next Saturday.

The difficulty is that with the second XI also struggling there are very few, if any, candidates knocking on the door to make the step-up into the 1s. The 2s woes continued on Saturday as they lost to their bogey-side Southgate for the sixth time in a row as they failed to chase down a winning target of 186.

Spin maestro Nitin Modha (pictured) couldn’t have done much more with seven for 41, his fifth five-fer for the club this season, but the batters were undone by some penetrating bowling by Southgate’s Ben Elders (3-25) and Ravi Desai (5-36).

Remarkably, eight Bessborough players made starts but none were able to get more than 22 as they were beaten by 40 runs.

A five-run victory for Harrow against Ickenham means that the 2s slide to the bottom of the league, eight points adrift with five games remaining. As with the 1s, the challenge doesn’t come any tougher as they entertain leaders Wembley at Headstone Manor.

The Third XI, the club’s undeniable success story of the summer, missed out on 10 points but a winning draw against Ealing 5s was enough to move them up to third place in Division 2 of the Middlesex 1987 Cricket League.

Bessborough put up a big total of 268 for five declared from 45 overs thanks largely to strong contributions from top-three batters; Phil Bush (45), Vidoosha Jayawardena (75) and Rajan Modha (53).

Ealing’s performance belied their lowly league position as they attacked from the off and got to within 13 runs of winning before the overs ran out, finishing on 255 for eight. Pick of the bowlers for Bessborough were seamer Stephen Kimsey (3-58) and the colt spinners Ajan Sivakumar (2-41) and Thanuka Jayawardena (2-64).

The winning draw means that the 3s are now unbeaten in seven games (four wins, three winning draws) and with so many of their nearest rivals also having sides in Division 1, thus blocking their promotion path, if Bessborough can maintain just a semblance of that form over the remainder of the season it should be enough to return to the top flight of the 1987 league at the first time of asking.

For the second week running the club was able to put out five teams and both the 4s and 5s returned from their travels satisfied with comfortable victories.

The 4s made the short journey to Harrow Recreation Ground to play West Harrow 3s in the 1987 league and gained some revenge for last season’s mauling there by winning by seven wickets after having dismissed their hosts for only 97. Colt Jamie Young was the star of the show with four for eight, his best senior figures for the club.

Bessborough’s response was measured with opener Richard Edmands (26 not out) providing a steady influence over newer players, of which Dinal Kadawathage (44) stood out.

The win against one of the league’s form sides means that Bessborough move up to fifth place. While automatic promotion is out of the question, a good end to the season could see the side finish in the top three.

The 5s won by 59 runs away to Alexandra Park, scoring 208 for seven in 40 overs on a slightly unpredictable Flicx strip. Virtually every batsman contributed at least 20 runs with all-rounder Sunil Baria top scoring with 31. Colts Beavan Fernando (27) and Sameer Aggarwal (25 not out) looked very comfortable too.

Once again skipper Simon Heaney wanted to spread the bowling around, using eight bowlers, of which only one – fourth team regular Bharat Vyas - didn’t pick up a wicket. Opening pair Stefaan Fernando (2-18) and Aadil Raja (2-25) made the most of the variable bounce, while spinner Aggarwal (2-23) produced the ball of the day to bowl the hard-hitting James Bonner (28) behind his legs. Alexandra Park were eventually dismissed for 149 inside 37 overs.

On Sunday, Bessborough were on the wrong end of an entertaining high-scoring encounter with Kings Langley in the Lords Chess Valley Sunday League. The visitors to Headstone Manor smashed their way to 283 for six in their 45 overs with all of their top five scoring a minimum of 40 runs.

First team captain Rohan Karkhanis was the only bowler to escape the onslaught with two for 39 from 10 overs. All of the others went for at least five runs per over.

Bessborough fell 45 runs short of the winning line but Bhavin Kakkad (60) and Rishi Patel (59) kept the away side honest.

The Barbarians made it two wins a row against opposition from Hertfordshire with a comfortable 81-run victory at home to Bushey on Thursday evening. Ian Barrie was merciless on the away side’s bowlers as he racked up 84 in no time, while the team’s leading scorer Rajan Modha added to his tally with 43 as the Barbarians posted their best ever total of 203 for seven.

Bushey were never really in the hunt after man-of-the-match Jay Chavda (4-23) removed two players in his first over. Part-time bowler Simon Heaney (3-25) helped himself to three wickets as Bushey were all out for 122 in 14 overs.

The last game of the season for the Barbarians is tonight at Headstone Manor neighbours West Harrow.

© Cricket World 2015

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