02:00PM, Friday 16 July 2021
Jack Stemp’s undefeated half-century helped secure victory for Pinkneys Green.
Hurley CC continued their Chilterns League Premiership season with a game against near neighbours Pinkneys Green. This was not the most significant sporting contest of the weekend, but it was still a keenly-contested game of cricket following home defeats the previous weekend.
Stand-in captain Ibraz Hussain called tails and opted for early runs on the board. The overs from the near end were bowled by captain Jake Stokes and off-spinner Steve Curlewis, and Jags Dhillon opened the bowling from the far end.
Despite bowling his away swing accurately, Kelvin Baillie was able to work Dhillon away on both sides of the wicket. The score had reached 29 in the eighth over when Baillie fell to a stunning one-handed catch by Stokes off his own bowling.
Umar Zaman again opened the batting, and he fell to a good catch in the covers by Nathan McDonagh in the 11th. Faisal Mahmood helped add 46 in 11 overs, and during this phase of the match the home side became quite excitable but slowly calmed down as the visitors lost wickets.
Fifty-nine for two became 79 for six as Shaan Hussain fell to a leg-side catch. Dhillon claimed the wickets of the Singhs Aman and Jagdeep, and Mahmood was finally bowled by Curlewis.
Greg Double came to the wicket on 75 for five after 19 overs and top-scored with 31.
Ibraz Hussain batted uncharacteristically down the order for six overs until dismissed by Curlewis with the score on 108. Ankush Sharma fell to a third catch for Stokes, and Double was caught on the leg side in the 35th with the score on 134 as the Hurley innings came to an end.
Pinkneys Green came out to bat for a notional 55 overs. Curlewis has been a Hurley nemesis in the recent past with both bat and ball, but this time the visitors got him early with the score on eight with the last ball of Aman’s second over via an inside edge.
Heyes followed four overs later trapped lbw for a duck with the score on 21. The other opening batsman, Vinay Mopur, was still there and he and Jags Dhillon lifted the score to 43 until Aman took a return catch to dismiss the latter.
Dhillon’s dismissal brought Jack Stemp to the crease, and he and Mopur added 71 in 11 overs to take the hosts within sight of victory. Zaman bowled well without luck from the near end and was replaced for the 18th over by Sharma with the score on 68.
From then on the runs kept coming. With 35 runs needed, Ibraz turned to Hassan Gul for the 22nd and pushed several fielders back. In Gul’s second over, Baillie took a superb catch in front of the scoreboard to dismiss Mopur for 56. Stemp completed the run-chase in the company of Sheyan Patel to finish with an undefeated half-century and guide the hosts to victory with 30 overs to spare.
Despite the wide margin of victory Pinkneys were made to work for their win.
The next match sees Hurley host Denham at Shepherds Lane.
The race to get as many people vaccinated against coronavirus has ramped up in the Royal Borough and Slough amidst an ongoing rise in cases across the country.