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Cricket: Harlow Town pull off vital win against Southend

Cricket / Tue 15th Jun 2021 at 07:48am

HARLOW Town 1st XI visited Southend-on-Sea & EMT on Saturday knowing a victory was essential in the hopes of pulling away from the bottom of the league.

On an absolutely scorching day, Southend won the toss and elected to bowl first. The outfield was rapid and the wicket looked good for a big score, indeed the opening pair of Baldwin and Gadhvi looked solid until Baldwin (14) played an uncharacteristic shot which ballooned to a Southend fielder.

Neil Gladwin (6) added some quick runs before not committing to a shot and picking out the same fielder as Baldwin. Soon Gadhvi (15) joined Baldwin and Gladwin back in the hutch, another wicket falling due to indecisiveness from Town. Ashley Alderson and Suraj Chauhan settled Town down and put together an impressive 120 run partnership for the 4th wicket.

Chauhan eventually fell for 62, again victim of a poor choice of shot being caught by Southend. Ashley Alderson scored 68 before he was caught and bowled. Pat Yates scored a hardworking 9, holding his end up while first Ashley and then Shaun Alderson (32 not out) scored freely at the other end. Skipper Daniel Farmer scored a quick fire 19 and Ronnie Yates scored 4 not out with Town declaring and gaining an extra 3 overs in which to bowl out the opposition. Town finished on 248-7 dec from 47 overs.

In reply Town were exceptional in the field. The opening spell of bowling from Suraj Chauhan and Sam Wilson showed excellent control, this eventually paid off with Chauhan trapping opening batsman Khan LBW before Wilson took possibly the catch of the season off his own bowling in the process of dismissing the other opening bat. Town kept the bowling tidy, although the impressive Southend skipper Sibbons was making the most of any loose bowling and the fast outfield to score at a decent rate.

A change of bowling bought almost immediate success as Neil Gladwin rolled back the years to take a sharp catch off the bowling of Farmer. Unfortunately for Town, Sibbons remained defiant, and alongside Steve Hunt, and then Adam Hunt there was a brief period of resistance from the home side. With Ronnie Yates and Farmer keeping the bowling tight, Yates succeeded in breaking the mini deadlock, Steve Hunt holing out to Shaun Alderson taking an impressive catch after having to wait an age for it to drop out of the sun. The second of the Hunt brothers was proving more difficult to dismiss, ably assisting Sibbons in reaching his half century. Town were eventually able to dismiss the home skipper after a fine catch from wicket keeper Pat Yates off the bowling of Farmer. After this dismissal Town tore through the Southend tail, Ronnie Yates taking another wicket, Farmer taking another 2 and Chauhan finishing the innings as it had started with an LBW. The pick of the bowlers was undoubtedly Daniel Farmer who finished with figures of 5-14 from 10 overs, he was ably assisted by Chauhan (2-34 from 10.5), Wilson (1-21 from 4), Yates (2-28 from 11), Om Thakeria (0-15 from 3).

Harlow Town 2nd XI had continued struggles with the bat. Facing Goresbrook 2nd XI at home. Skipper Sam Charles won the toss and elected to field. Town toiled with the opening batsmen of Goresbrook, Vineet Jain dismissed the opening bat, however Goresbrook continued to score at a healthy rate. Simon Rowell entered the attack and took a remarkable 8 wickets finishing with exceptional figures of 8-38 from 11.1 overs. The other wicket was taken by Tom Wilcox, with the visitors dismissed. In reply Town had a nightmare with the bat, losing wickets at seemingly every opportunity finishing on a miserly 25 all out the wickets shared evenly between the Goresbrook opening bowling pair. 

This week Town T20 XI are in action today (Tuesday) at 6pm against Walthamstow in the T20 Smash, spectators are welcome, the bar will be open and refreshments available.

On Saturday the 1st XI host Leigh on Sea hoping to continue to build momentum. The second XI travel to high-flying Woodford Green on Saturday hoping to put right some recent poor displays, whilst the 3rd XI travel to Stansted.

On Sunday there is a return to local rivalry as we face close neighbours Harlow in another T20 smash game. This is the first time we have met in two seasons due to COVID so this will be a great occasion for the town.

Please check either the Harlow Town or Harlow websites for confirmed details of the start time of this match.

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