Two great run-chases against Ealing sees exciting wins for the 1's and 2's.
Spectators of the 1st XI at Old Deer Park have witnessed some fantastic, nail-biting games of cricket this summer and yesterday's clash between the Champions of 2017 - Ealing - and the Champions of 2018 - Richmond - was yet another thrilling encounter which resulted in a win for Richmond by the narrowest of margins. Elsewhere, the 2's also enjoyed a terrific win over Ealing, whilst the 3's lost heavily to 3rd XI Champions North Middlesex and the 4's beat Hampstead.
Greg King invited Ealing to bat and was rewarded with 3 early wickets - 1 from Will Phillips, 2 for David Burton - to leave the visitors 23 for 3. However the combative Chris Wakefield, in partnership with Ealing Director of Cricket Chad Barrett, got the visitors back on track with a 92 run partnership. By this time the spin partnership of Abhishek Jhunjhunwala and Abdullah Nazir was in operation and wickets begin to tumble. When Jack Timmins got into the action to remove Glasper, Ealing were 145 for 8 and in trouble. However Barrett battled on and in the end the visitors were able to set a target of 232.
Richmond's reply was excellent with Phillips and Cormac McLoughlin putting on 78 for the 1st wicket. After Phillips went for an excellent 50, Cormac and Ben Compton seemed to making serene progress, reaching 137 with plenty of time to spare before there was a mini-collapse. First Compo was given out caught and bowled. Most observers felt that it was a clear bump-ball but the umpires thought differently. 4 balls later Abhi attempted a big shot and holed out. 5 balls later and the skipper was back in the changing room and Richmond were 139 for 4. Daniel Stanley joined Cormac and together they restored some common sense to the chase but Cormac's dismissal with the score on 163 led to a second mini-collapse - 174 for 7. Enter Abdullah whose batting has had limited opportunities but he stepped up to the plate hitting three boundaries of Glasper when the rate had slipped. But when he was out with 17 still required, there was still work to be done. But Dan Stanley is becoming a supreme finisher and yet again he proved his power and ability but taking us across the line. This was an innings out outstanding quality and it was fitting that his straight drive for 4 won us the game. Yet again, a great end to a great game. Afterwards the Ealing players came into the dressing room to hand over the League Champions Trophy and Richmond's tally of 155 points is a new record for the Premier League. They will be hoping to add a final 10 points when they travel to relegated Brondesbury next Saturday.
Meanwhile at Corfton Road the 2's also had a superb run chase. Set 277 for victory off 45 overs, after Michael Wood's 4 for 43, the 2's set about the chase positively with Stephen Bail and Sami Shori putting on 115 for the 1st wicket. Just when it was needed Kieran Evans added momentum with a hard hit 56 off 27 balls. Skipper Oli Tame looked set to see his side over the line but when he went, 26 runs were still needed. At the start of the penultimate over, Richmond required 18 to win. Up stepped 15 year old Tanmay Thanawalla and his enterprise and skill - including a delightful ramp shot - saw 15 scored off the over. With just 3 to win, he and Anirudh Muraly kept their heads and the match was won. A terrific victory which sees the 2's move into the 3rd place.
The 3's faced North Middlesex with an understrength side and were dismissed for just 142, a target that North Midd knocked off for just 2 wickets. The 4's meanwhile were also dismissed for a low score - 142 - but rolled Hampstead 4's over for just 66 to take the win.
One League weekend to go and we will be hoping for wins all round to see the season off in style before we celebrate back at ODP with some karaoke!
Updated 16:48 - 12 Feb 2019 by Richard Zotov
Richmond's 1st XI secure the Middlesex Double with a 4 wicket win over North Middlesex in the Middlesex Cup Final.