An undefeated Saturday – reports for June 21st 2014
Preston 1st X1 v Met Police Bushey CC – 21st June
Preston hosted Met Police Bushey CC for the first time in Saracens Herts Div 2, and the visitors took first knock and what looked like a good deck. With the sun shimmering off the wicket, it was going to be a hot one. After a slow start, hard hit runs from the MPB lower order allowed them to post a total of 170 for 9 from 53 overs. Preston’s attack bowled well with Mark Waters returning figures of 17 overs, 2 for 40, supported by spinners Max Anderson (2-30) and Peter Murrell (2-72).
Once again, the Preston innings was led from ball one by young James Stevens, who comfortably reached a classy 52 before being caught at first slip after sweeping the ball onto the back of his bat. The MPB attack was mixed, and frequent loose deliveries meant that the in-form Ben Hill (36*) and Dave Fleckney (29*) saw the Preston side home in the 45th over for the loss of just 4 wickets. Preston took away a much needed and confidence boosting 30 points.
Preston 2nd XI v Flitwick 2nd XI
Preston’s 2nd XI, missing injured captain Ashley Catlin among others, travelled to Flitwick to face their strong 2nd team in Division 5. Flitwick won the toss and opted to bat without hesitation. No wonder, for their opening batsmen Phil Gurney (115) and Mark Umlauf (140*) ran up a huge partnership of 272 in perfect batting conditions. Preston didn’t help themselves, dropping Umlauf twice and Gurney once. But in truth Flitwick were far too strong for Preston, with several more very good batsmen itching to get to the crease. Andy Riant (1 for 108 from 22 overs) and Ollie Gallimore (0 for 62 from 14 overs) did their best to contain Flitwick, and may have helped delay Flitwick’s declaration until the 50th over at 282 for 1.
Preston struggled in response, lacking confidence as Flitwick’s bowling attack proved just as capable as its batting line-up. Only Iain Williamson made a significant score (62), supported by Tom Murrell (14) in a long partnership. But Andy Riant (10*) held the tail together long enough for number 11 Finlay Connah to block the last few balls and secure a draw at 127 for 9. Flitwick may have regretted delaying their declaration.
Preston 4th XI v Letchworth 5th XI
Preston 4ths played Letchworth 5ths on a good pitch at Henlow. Letchworth notched up 235 for 5, with Preston stalwart Chris Newell taking 3 for 45 from 19 overs. In a valiant effort Preston came close to chasing down the total, finishing on 210 for 6 with Azad (36), Simon Luxton (27) and Dave Saunders (22) playing supporting roles to man of the match Newell, who made an unbeaten 57 to complete a fine allround game.
The fourths draw, together with the one’s and third’s victories, and the second’s defiance, allowed Preston to declare an “Undefeated Saturday”!