Cricket: Important victory for Harlow Town in relegation battle

Cricket / Mon 23rd Aug 2021 at 04:42pm

HARLOW Town recorded an important victory in their battle against relegation at promotion chasing Leigh-on-Sea.

Skipper Farmer won the toss and chose to bowl first on a slightly damp and green wicket.

Town’s opening bowlers Suraj Chauhan and Sam Wilson stifled the opening batsmen of Leigh-on-Sea, leading to the top order of Leigh-on-Sea playing shots out of their comfort range with smart catches taken by Jibran Azam, Daryl Pettengell and Daniel Farmer.

At 43-3 Town were faced with old nemesis Dean Waller and experienced Roy Smith at the crease for Leigh. The bowling remained very tight and with the score moving along slowly Smith went for a big shot, only to succeed in picking out Chauhan at long off.

It wasn’t long before Waller followed, trying to hit Jibran Azam out of Chalkwell Park he instead found Shaun Alderson on the boundary who took a smart catch.

The middle order of Leigh added some runs at a quick rate, but some great fielding from Lowles and again from Alderson dismissed the two main run scorers. Chauhan and Farmer finished off the Leigh tail, with Town dismissing the home side for 191. The pick of the bowlers was Farmer taking 4 wickets, however this was a very committed and solid team performance. Farmer (4-37 off 6.5 overs), Chauhan (1-16 off 7), Wilson (2-45 off 9), Ronnie Yates (0-52 off 9), Azam (2-35 off 9).

Set a target of 192 to win and considering recent batting performances Town felt confident of chasing the target down. The opening batsmen Pat Yates and Jay Lowles got Town off to a great start. Pat fell for 19 playing a lazy shot and chipping the ball to a fielder at mid-on.

This brought Chauhan to the crease who immediately sent the ball crashing in to some local apartments courtesy of a ridiculously huge 6 that hit the road and then bounced on to a first floor balcony, he continued to score freely while being supported by Lowles. Jay fell in the end, caught and bowled for a hard working 25. Shaun Alderson came and went quickly scoring 4.

Darry Pettengell batting at number 5 came in and immediately attacked the bowling of Leigh, scoring 28, including 2 sixes. At this point Town looked in total control, a settled Chauhan and a disciplined Azam at the crease. Chauhan had different ideas and was caught at cow corner while trying to smash the ball out of the park again. Baldwin came in but was soon back in the hutch for 3. Azam soon fell for 21 after attempting his second straight sweep shot.

Eventually Farmer (14 not out), Ronnie Yates (3) and Dev Madupuri (1 not out) saw Town home for a huge victory.

Harlow Town 2nd XI hosted Woodford Green and after having the visitors 27/4 the visitors felt the rain was too much to continue and the game was abandoned. Harlow Town 3rd XI didn’t have a game due to Stansted 2nd XI being unable to field a side.

This weekend Harlow Town 1st XI host league rivals Benfleet in a game which could seal our survival. The 2nd XI travel to promotion chasing Stanford Le Hope while the 3rd XI could seal promotion as they travel to Thundridge.

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