Hemel stumble to bottom of table

Hemel followed up victory over the undefeated league leaders with defeat to fellow strugglers on Saturday – which sent them to the foot of the Herts League Championship.

Chorleywood, who had won the toss against Luton last week, put them in and skittled them out for 86, did a bit better this week, winning the toss against Hemel and bowling them out for just 72.

Ryan Evans (3-12) and Will Pendered (5-27) were again their strike force as Brett Penny managed the top score for Hemel of 29.

Hemel were not able to exact the same on Chorleywood. There were a couple of early wickets for Brett Penny ( 2-26) and three later ones for the Hodgins, Nick (2-14) and Lewis (1-5) but not enough as Chorleywood got home with five wickets down.

Last year Hemel II beat WGC II both home and away in Division 2B of the Herts League. However there was little sign of that dominance on Saturday as WGC II saw off a somewhat weak Hemel with some ease.

Put in by Welwyn, Hemel were struggling throughout their batting and only a spirited 28* from Rory Fraser at number 10 saw them over the 100 mark to make 106 all out.

Welwyn had the experienced Martin James opening who stroked his way to 74* from 69 balls in just over an hour. That saw off Hemel as they went down by nine wickets.

There had been successive victories for Hemel III over the last two weeks so it was probably asking a bit much, the way this season has gone, to make it three on the trot. And so it was as they went down to a defeat away at Hertford III.

Put in by Hertford, only Scott Radcliffe (35) and Anjam Khan (32) made scores into the 30s as Hertford weadled through the order to dismiss Hemel for 145.

Not only short on the batting front, Hemel were short of bowlers as well. Jeff Hurrell set the mark for Hertford with 51 from the top. Martin Botha, eased out of retirement, took 3-26 for Hemel but other than that it was a wicket each for Anjam Khan (1-66) and Jack Boughton (1-19). Hemel III slip from fourth to sixth in Division 4B.

The bottom two sides in Division 8B met and a win for Hemel IV means that Stevenage IV drop down to bottom, replaced by Hemel in ninth.

Hemel IV ran through the Stevenage top order with Dawood Iqbal returning 4-33 and Chris Pearson 2-17. A late recovery from Mankani (31) and Parmar (13) gave Stevenage some hope but then Ross Chapman came on and cleaned out the tail in 20 balls with three wickets for two runs.

There were still runs to be got for Hemel, but they managed them. Jim Langley top scored with 22, young Will Stokes made 19 and Nick Benson made 12. Wicket takers Dawood Iqbal with 12* and Ross Chapman (6*) saw Hemel through to victory.

It is not often, if at all, you get an innings which exceeds the area on the scoresheet where the ‘cumulative run tally’ is maintained - but it happened at Hemel in the Chess Valley League on Sunday.

A strong Finchley side, who won the Division 1 last year – on run rate difference from Hemel and Harefield – laid down their marker this year with an emphatic mauling of Hemel with, by all accounts, a couple of Middlesex II players, colts plus a Northants II player. It was not the strongest of Hemel sides with five regular Saturday 1st XI players.

Finchely made 443-7. The best bowling for Hemel, amongst the carnage, was Jack Doodson with 4-73 from 10 overs - going for seven an over but at least four wickets were taken.

Chasing that total was always going to be a bit of a challenge, to put it mildly and losing the first two batsmen in the first over makes it a little more tricky. Still, Tom Warerton blazed away for a top score of 53, Lewis Hodgins added 29 and Ed Langley 28. Adam Moulster down at number 11 swatted a lusty 31 before he was last out playing on to O’Keefe, Hemel all out for 211.

In Division Six Hemel II scraped a two wicket victory over Chenies & Latimer with three balls to go. Batting first Chenies made 185-9 from their 45 overs, Jamsheed Akbar led the wickets with 3-41 from 10 overs and James Stroebel took 2-32. Skipper of the day Ben Dumpleton gave away just 11 runs from nine overs.

Owen McGinty, in his first game of the season, opened and made 45, Steve Smith added 24 and Ali 23 but it took Ed Shaw with 31* at the tail to see Hemel over the winning line.