3 months ago
By Chris Goldie
The 1's win their 6th League match (the 7th being washed out) whilst there were winning draws for the 2's and 3's. The 4's and 5's lose by 4 wickets.
One of the finest innings ever seen at Old Deer Park - 153 not out from Will Phillips - saw Richmond defeat Hampstead by 2 wickets and take a 20 point lead at the top of the Premier Division. By successfully chasing the target of 332, the 1's created a new club record in the MCCL passing the previous highest run chase of 306 against Eastcote in 2002. It was, quite simply, a stunning win.
Greg King won the toss and asked Hampstead to bat first. On an excellent pitch, the visitors top order took advantage of some average bowling and a couple of missed chances to get off to a flyer. At 173 for 2 at lunch, they seemed well set for a massive score and the runs continued after the resumption as they moved to 260 for 2 before the spin of Bhavesh Pankhania and Abhishek Jhunjhunwala slowly pegged them back. With the last 6 wickets falling for 27 runs, Hampstead were dismissed for 332 in the 60th over.
An injury to Ben Compton gave Phillips the chance to open the innings and he took it with both hands. After King's departure with the score on 30, Will Sobczak and Phillips put on 125 in good time but Sobczak's departure, followed quickly by the dismissals of Daniel Stanley and Jhunjhunwala set Richmond back. However, Phillips continued to manoeuvre the ball around as Rob Gibson struck 57 off 44 balls to keep us in touch. After Gibson's departure, the scoreboard continued to tick over but the rate was rising. 80 were required off 10. Alex Griffiths fell to a catch on boundary before Will Jenkins and Compton injected some quick runs to get the rate down to just over run a ball. However both were run out - the latter as he stayed out of his crease whilst batting with a runner - to leave Phillips and Pankhania with 24 to win in 21 balls. At one stage, the draw seemed the most likely result but Phillips had other ideas. With 12 needed off 7, he hit a stunning straight 6 to leave just 6 required off the final over. Bhav took the single of the first before Phillips found the boundary with a superb ramp shot. The winning runs - and Phillips' 150 - came off the next ball to the delight of the crowd. It was an exceptional win and Will's innings was magnificent.
Elsewhere the 2's and 3's both got winning draws. Having set Teddington a target of 225 - after half-centuries from Cormac McLoughlin and Zain Bhatkar - Richmond's bowlers struck 4 times immediately after drinks to leave the hosts 90 for 5 and the shutters went up.
At the Newman Ground, the 3's posted an excellent 287 off 52 overs, with half centuries from Jimmy Arnold and Tom Tuffley, but could not bowl League Leaders Hampstead out, the visitors ending of 175 for 7.
The 4's and 5's both lost their matches. The 4's were in big trouble on a difficult pitch against Indian Gymkhana on 63 for 6 before Rodleigh Fortuin and Hassan Shafiq dragged the score to 130 all out. It wasnt enough as the hosts got home with 4 wickets to spare. Likewise, the 5's total of 137 all out was insufficient as they too lost by 4 wickets.
Updated 13:25 - 14 Aug 2018 by Richard Zotov