Crouch End Cricket Club

C.E.C.C.| Shepherds Cot | Crouch End | North London | N8 8JJ

4th XI v North Middlesex 5 30th July 2016

Although North Middlesex won the toss and asked Crouch End to bat, the Crouch End innings was uncannily similar to the chasing innings last week.  In each case only 4 wickets fell, Ruaridh made a brisk, powerful contribution in the region of 50 and Shiva got a big unbeaten score, this time 85.  The Crouch End total of 231 also featured some classy back-foot boundaries by Sanjay and a patient, well-judged 48 not out from Hikmatullah.  Murmurings among the opposition led to the supposition that to declare on 46 overs, half of the 92, was generous given the ease of the wicket for batting and the short boundaries.  The other muttering to be heard came from Mike who in the last two matches has spent 46 overs with his pads on and not faced a ball.

At the start of the North Mid. innings runs did leach away.  Kamuran struggled again but got a wicket off a full toss – caught at cover point by Simon, his first catch of the season.  The runs continued to flow but Dhamendra’s perseverance was rewarded with three wickets - a smart catch by Shiva in the gulley, a stumping by Mike and a generous LBW.  There then followed a run of good tight overs by Dhamendra and Hikmatullah in which North Mid. slipped against the clock.  Time to attack.  Chanchal replaced Hikmatullah and though he took an over or two to settle in he started to look dangerous and hit the stumps to take the fifth wicket.  Dhamendra bowled the incomer for his fourth wicket but that brought the captain to the crease to join the increasingly confident No. 3.  With 20 overs to go North Mid. needed 6 an over, and these two batsmen and the boys on the boundary clearly thought that, given the conditions, this was not beyond them. 

Crouch End could still afford take a risk or two and Kamuran was offered the chance to make the breakthrough.  He failed to find any form and Simon was about to replace him when Chanchal at the other end knocked back the captain’s leg stump.  Simon’s best chance had just gone: Hikmatullah replaced Kamuran and got a wicket with his first ball: the dangerous No. 3 sliced a drive in to the arms of Simon at cover point for his second catch of the season.  But it wasn’t all over. A tail-ender made a couple of text-book off drives and a few leg side hoiks to keep the chase alive until he steepled a catch to Andrew at mid off. Chanchal starts the next game on a hat-trick as his next ball was nicked to Mike the keeper.  North Middlesex all out for 194 in 40 overs. 

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