Cricket: Harlow CC show promotion credentials

Lifestyle / Mon 20th Jun 2016 am30 10:53am

HARLOW established their credentials as serious promotion contenders with a win over an impressive and motivated Southend-On-Sea side. Put into bat, Harlow were soon put on the back foot, figuratively and literally, by Southend’s pace attack of Joe Robbins and Ashleigh McCafferty, their Australian import. Alan Jones received a painful strike on the left elbow after misjudging a delivery from McCafferty before Robbins dismissed Mohammed Waqas (12) and Rehman Ahmed (2). Jones and Ahmed Khawaja, last week’s centurion, batted with resolve to initially see off the Southend openers and then maintain a decent strike rate. Their partnership yielded 129, taking Harlow to 168 in the 36th over when Jones (68) was caught behind off the first ball of McCafferty’s second spell.

Khawaja, at his imperious best, was joined at the crease by Ubaid and the pair put together a terrific partnership of 90 runs in 10 overs. Khawaja had reached 113 when he skied a ball to Phil Gray at cover for his third catch of the day. Khawaja’s knock contained two 6s and thirteen 4s. The partnership also saw Ubaid (53) strike his first half-century for the club.

Harlow score of 292-6 off 50 overs would be challenging for Southend but they boast a hard-hitting batting line up that was never going to die wondering. Harlow needed early wickets and they came courtesy of Callum Sykes and Nicky Baxter, who each removed an opener, and a run out. Sykes also dismissed Tom Phillipe, unluckily adjudged LBW. At 30-4 Southend needed a significant partnership from Matthew Wagstaff and the talismanic Robbins; Sykes bowling Robbins (6) with a yorker was a key moment in the game. The impressive Wagstaff, who hit three huge 6s, was batting aggressively to keep Southend up with the run rate but he had been left too much to do. When Wagstaff (68) was dismissed by Luke Heskett Southend were reduced to 142-7. Despite a good cameo by Alex Karkoski (41), Harlow were comfortable winners in the end, dismissing Southend for 196. It was another terrific contribution with the ball by Callum Sykes who took 3 wickets for 33 in 7 overs. Luke Heskett also bagged 3 wickets at a cost of only 20 runs.

Harlow remain unbeaten this season and is amongst a trio of clubs just outside the promotion positions.

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