Debutants star in a solid draw. Dewan chips in with a magic four-for.
The HAC arrived at the picturesque Vincent Square ground in good spirits and with a particular welcome to debutantes Paul Brierley and Ben Rose. Captain Haines won the toss and elected to bat.
OWCC’s lively opener was fended off by openers Heranjal and Lojhan who enjoyed an opening stand of 53. Lojhan succumbed in the 13th over for a solid 22 while Heranjal followed in the next over for a classy 31. With the openers having taken some of the sting out of OWCC’s main paceman, new batsmen Rose and Hills increased the run rate by scoring 69 from 10 overs and the HAC were set fair at 124 for 3 when Hills fell for 43 in the 25th over. By this stage the somewhat slow over rate meant time was running short and Brierley (11) and Patel (1) approached their innings selflessly while debutant Rose ended with a notable 57. Haines (17*) and Charles (11*) concluded the innings in style, Charles having smashed his first ball for six, and the HAC finished with a very respectable 200 - 6 from 38 overs on what was a more challenging track than was anticipated.
Openers Lawson and Charles beat the bat on many occasions but the HAC were not able to make a breakthrough by drinks when OWCC were 65/0 from 17. Whatever was in the drinks we will never know but Dewan and Quadri were inspired and OWCC lost three wickets in two overs including a sharp stumping and catch by Brierley who was tidy behind the stumps. Heranjal bowled a tight over before retiring through injury and Rose showed his promise as an all rounder although ending wicketless. OWCC attempted to fight their way back but following some tight bowling and sharp fielding they shut up shop until victory was a mathematical impossibility. In the latter stages Dewan took two further wickets to end with 4/44 and Lawson also added a deserved wicket to his name. OWCC finished 173 for 6 from 37.
While the scorebook shows a draw, anyone watching would conclude a winning draw to the HAC who played the sharper cricket, displayed a wonderful team spirit and exhibited a far superior array of cricket caps / hats. A solid all round performance.