Leaders Hampstead slip up in title race - and Ealing take advantage

Hampstead captain Steve Clark

Hampstead captain Steve Clark - Credit: Max Flego

Hampstead’s lead at the top of the Premier Division has been cut to eight points after they suffered a home defeat against Twickenham on Saturday.

The league leaders posted a strong total of 270-8 from 60 overs, but it proved not to be enough as Twickenham reached 271-8 from 55 overs in a high-quality affair – and second-placed Ealing took advantage by beating Stanmore.

“This was a tremendous game of cricket and a great advert for the league,” said the chairman of Hampstead’s playing committee, Nick Brown. “All of the spectators were royally entertained.

“Naturally we are disappointed not to have won, but we’re not down on ourselves.

“We batted well and whilst Twickenham put themselves into a strong position with very fast start when they batted, we almost turned it around with some good spin bowling and terrific fielding, so there are a lot of positives.”

Hampstead were asked to bat on their home ground at Lymington Road and they started strongly, with skipper Steve Clark (43) and Graham Clark (42) taking them to 81 without loss.

Mubasher Hassan also made 43, while No4 Jaahid Ali (33) and Liam Hughes (42) also posted strong scores, taking Hampstead to 207-5.

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Rob Jones added eight while Charlie Cooke notched 34 at No7, and George Leadbetter (10) and Chris Beamont-Dark (9) added useful contributions lower down the order as Hampstead finished with 270-8 from their allotted 60 overs.

The hosts made a good start with the ball as well, with Steve Clark (3-66) dismissing openers Rashid Mullahzadah (9) and Babar Choudhary (19), leaving Twickenham 50-2.

However, Carlos Nunes and Clint McCabe added 125 runs together for the third wicket, before David Russell came in and struck 59.

Scott O’Brien contributed 19 and, although Hughes (1-42) bowled Fawad Mullahzadah for two, Donovan Fyfe added 16 at No8, taking the visitors to 239-7.

Matt Bendelow was run out for one, leaving Twickenham eight wickets down and 25 runs short.

However, skipper Nunes had remained unbeaten and he passed his half century, reaching 52 not out alongside Parminda Singh (23no) as the away team reached 271-8 and secured the 10 points.