Hampstead take advantage of rivals’ slip-ups with victory over Teddington

Hampstead captain Steve Clark hit a half-century. Pic: Paolo Minoli

Hampstead captain Steve Clark hit a half-century. Pic: Paolo Minoli - Credit: Archant

Hampstead closed the gap on the top teams in the Premier Division of the Middlesex County Cricket League after earning their third consecutive victory, beating Teddington by 61 runs at Lymington Road.

Captain Steve Clark hit a half-century as the hosts were dismissed for 205 right at the end of their allotted 50 overs, and that proved to be plenty.

Clark (2-26) dismissed Teddington’s openers and Ragheb Aga (2-19) and Chris Beaumont-Dark (2-36) were also effective, while Will Roberts took 3-16 from his 5.5 overs as the visitors were bowled out for 144.

Hampstead remain fourth in the table but, with both of the sides directly above them – Richmond and North Middlesex – both losing, they are just one point outside the top two.

The chairman of the playing committee, Nick Brown, told Ham&High Sport: “We’re happy with the result, I don’t think we’re that happy with the performance.

“We fielded and bowled well but there was something that didn’t fire with the batting – 206 was par at best, but winning is the most important thing and if we can improve a little in a couple of areas then we’ll all be happier.”

Asked to bat, Hampstead made a solid start as Clark and George Adair passed 50 without loss.

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Adair (33) and his replacement Jamie Gibson (2) were both caught off Nish Patel (2-34), but Clark (50) and Mubasher Hassan added 51, with the skipper reaching his half-century just before being caught and bowled by David Keightley (4-58), leaving Hampstead 115-3.

Hassan went soon after, caught off Keightley after hitting 23 off 24 balls – and Aga then struck 34 off 27 balls, including two sixes and two fours.

However, he was also caught off Keightley and, again, another wicket swiftly followed as Jack Biddulph (0) became Keightley’s fourth victim.

Jonathan Dunne could only add eight and, while Robert Jones struck 12 off 15 balls, his run-out left Hampstead 172-8.

Beaumont-Dark hit 17 off nine balls before being caught, and wicketkeeper Charlie Wedgwood made an unbeaten 13 off 26 balls, taking the home side past 200 before last man Roberts (3) was caught and bowled off the final ball.

Clark made early inroads when Hampstead took the ball, removing both of Teddington’s openers, Tom Twiney (9) and Tom Healy (28).

The visitors reached 70-2, but the next four wickets fell for just 28 runs as Aga and Beaumont-Dark prised out Alex Fullarton (9), Ben Williams (24), James Keightley (3) and James Fear (12) and left them 98-6.

There was no let-up as Roberts got in on the act, swiftly removing Patel (2). And, although Teddington’s eighth-wicket pair added 34, Roberts removed Tom Elliott (25) and Ben Ladd-Gibbon (1) was caught by Clark off Gibson (1-18) before Roberts (3-16) removed last man David Keightley for a duck.

Brown added: “It was great to have Ragheb Aga back in the side. He is top quality with bat and ball and is always missed when he’s unavailable, so we hope he’s back for good now and injury-free. He’s going to make a big difference to us.”