Hampstead head into format change with momentum

Olly Redwood hits out for Hampstead during the Middlesex County Premier Division (pic: George Philli

Olly Redwood hits out for Hampstead during the Middlesex County Premier Division (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo). - Credit: George Phillipou/TGS Photo

Hampstead had Middlesex’s Ollie Rayner drop in and help them out last weekend and Nick Brown paid tribute to the all-rounder

Hampstead chairman Nick Brown is confident they will keep winning games in the Middlesex County Premier Division despite the format changing to all-day cricket.

For the first five matches of the season, clubs in the upper tier play contests of 50-overs each and the Lymington Road outfit triumphed three times.

Now the Premier Division, like usual, switches to all-day cricket for nine fixtures and Hampstead will look to show they can adapt at Stanmore on Saturday.

Brown said: "We are making progress and now have some momentum going into the longer format games.

"Our win over Twickenham on Saturday was probably our best all-round performance of the season.

"There are, as always, areas where we can improve, but confidence is a big factor.

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"A few players who needed runs and wickets have picked up just what they needed, so we're now ready for red ball cricket to start."

Hampstead received a hand from Middlesex all-rounder Ollie Rayner on Saturday in the 113-run home success over Twickenham.

Rayner, who first played for the club in 2013, top scored with 73 and picked up 2-23 in the field from 5.1 overs.

Brown said: "I wanted to mention Ollie. He has been very much part of Hampstead CC for some time, however his Middlesex commitments have meant he hasn't been able to play that much.

"But in spite of his loan move to Kent being announced, he still honoured his playing commitment to us on Saturday.

"We wish him all the best with his move, hopefully we will see more of him, but understand his priorities are with his professional cricket and his family."

Rayner's knock of 73 helped Hampstead make it up to 264 on Saturday before they were dismissed with 22 balls left.

Opener Rob Keen added 31 while Sam Evison (36) and Ollie Redwood (35) made key contributions last weekend.

In the field, Hampstead had too much for Twickenham as Ben Frazer (3-35) and Rich Banham (2-11) did the early damage for the hosts.

Despite a slight recovery, Rayner and Ajit Sambhi (2-29) wrapped up an emphatic win.