Hampstead miss the chance to go top with defeat at Richmond

Jamie Gibson was the highest scorer for defeated Hampstead with 30. Pic: Paolo Minoli

Jamie Gibson was the highest scorer for defeated Hampstead with 30. Pic: Paolo Minoli - Credit: Archant

Hampstead endured a disappointing weekend after losing out in their top-of-the-table clash away at Richmond in the Premier Division of the Middlesex County Cricket League.

With Ealing losing for the second week running, the winners of this clash in south London would move to the summit at the halfway stage of the campaign.

Sadly, the visitors’ batting crumbled in the face of a devastating spell from ex-Middlesex CCC paceman David Burton (7-57) and they were bowled out for 113 in 30.3 overs.

They fought back to leave Richmond wobbling at 16-3 but the hosts ultimately reached 114-5 in 24.3 overs - and the chairman of Hampstead’s playing committee, Nick Brown, admitted Burton’s heroics meant his side’s total was all but impossible to defend.

“We have to give a lot of credit to David Burton,” he said. “It was a tremendous effort to bowl a 15-over spell in that heat, shouldering the responsibility with the ball in a team that at least on paper was a bit under-strength, and he deserves all the plaudits he gets.

“I expect there were more than a few nerves in their dressing room when we had them 16-3, and who knows what could have happened if we’d nicked another one out at that stage, but 113 was never realistically going to be enough.”

Only Jamie Gibson (30) and Ragheb Aga (26) among the Hampstead top order offered much resistance, both falling to Burton, who later had Jack Biddulph caught for 21.

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Captain Steve Clark and Gibson both grabbed two wickets in Richmond’s reply, but Andrew Lowe’s unbeaten 45 saw the visitors home.

Meanwhile, two wickets on debut for Bex Hay and frugal figures of 1-12 in six over from Rachael Hewer saw Hampstead Ladies end their losing streak with a two-wicket win over Acton.