Hampstead leap into top four after overcoming Richmond by seven wickets
17:43 28 July 2014
Hampstead posted their third victory from four games in the Premier Division of the Middlesex County Cricket League, thumping Richmond by seven wickets and leaping into the top four.
Asked to field, Hampstead captain Steve Clark (2-8) immediately removed Richmond’s openers Sam Jobson (1) and Bhavesh Pankhania (5).
Jordan Price (3-35) then took three successive wickets, prising out Joe Smith (4), David Burton (1) and Jack Porter (4), leaving the hosts in real trouble at 22-5.
A 56-run partnership stopped the slump, but Chris Beaumont-Dark (3-17) got rid of Patrick Stern (10) and his replacement Sam Goodwill (0) in successive deliveries, and Freddie Fairhead (2-41) prised out the home side’s top scorer Andrew Lowe (56).
Richmond were now 94-8 but Tom Hemingway (31) and Scott Power (11) added 40 before they were both caught by Clark off Fairhead and Beaumont-Dark respectively, leaving Richmond all out for 140 after 52.1 overs.
By contrast, Hampstead started well with the bat, with Clark and George Adair reaching 86 without loss.
Clark was caught on 36 but Adair went on to notch an unbeaten 66, and by the time Ben Scott was stumped - having hit 34 off 30 balls - Hampstead were just two runs short at 139-2.
Ragheb Aga went for a duck but Fairhead (2 not out) helped Adair to secure a comfortable victory after 33 overs.
With league leaders Teddington suffering an upset against North Middlesex, reigning champions Hampstead are now just 18 points off the top.
The chairman of the playing committee, Nick Brown, said: “This was the sort of dominant performance that we haven’t seen enough of this year, but there are six games left and if we can stay fit and other external factors do not impact us harshly, then there are interesting times ahead for us.
“I said at the start of the season that the title would be won with a low points total and that is playing out with ‘surprise’ results no longer being a surprise. The league administration must be delighted.”