Reed Firsts completed their league programme with a last over victory against old rivals Langleybury. Their 3 wicket win condemned the hosts to relegation from the Championship. Lacking the usual seam attack with even Ed Wharton playing as a batsman through an elbow injury, Reed started well, Jack Caine (7-2-20-2) bowling both of Langleybury's experienced openers and Matt Giblin could have had them 10-3 if a sharp chance in the slips had been pouched. However, Richard Oxley (58) and Danny Walker (76) passed the 100 mark until Sean Tidey broke the partnership. It was the occasional bowler Stuart Smith who did the most damage though, finishing with 4-50 and with Giblin claiming two late wickets Langleybury's innings closed on 232-9. Rob Lankester (20) and Ed Wharton (45) began the run chase, but it was a 50 partnership between Richard Barlow (33) and Marcus Martin which turned the game Reed's way. Langleybury skipper Oxley desperately alternated 8 bowlers to try to stem the tide of runs, but Martin (68 not out) well supported by Tom Greaves (16) and Jack Caine (15 not out) inexorably reduced the deficit until the latter drove a boundary to win the match by 3 wickets with 4 balls remaining. A welcome victory for Reed to end an up-and-down season, but a sad week for Langleybury, who lost both their long-standing President, Gordon Riddick, and their battle against relegation. Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
Although Reed 1st XI lost to Hoddesdon by 55 runs, more worrying was the score in the other relegation battles and when Langleybury lost by 1 wicket in the penultimate over, a collective sigh of relief was heard around the pavilion. As a result Reed will continue playing in the Championship again next year, leaving Langleybury, Flitwick and Sawbridgeworth to fight for survival next week in the final round of matches. Reed’s game was dominated by two unbeaten tons: 102 by the visitors' Ross Clarke and 123 by Matt Sampson. The latter, however, was crucial to Reed’s total of 222 as Rob Lankester’s 22 was the next highest score in their innings. Once again Reed’s attack struggled to bowl out the opposition, although the spin of Sean Tidey (2-50) and Matt Bowles (2-63) accounted for 4 of the six wickets to fall. In addition, Tom Greaves bowled a very tight spell, conceding just 21 runs from his 10 overs. Although Sampson’s knock was chanceless until he reached 99, he spooned a high chance to mid-off, but the on-rushing fielder dropped it and he scampered through for his century to a standing ovation from the Reed faithful as he celebrated his second ton this season. Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
A youthful Reed side played host to Camden CC at The Green on Sunday. Reed skipper Rob Lankester won the toss and elected to bat on what looked a very nice wicket. Facing a tight bowling attack, Reed openers Richard Barlow and Toby Fynn started slowly but positively, putting the rare loose deliveries to the boundary in the early overs. Fynn (8) was the first batsman to fall, looking to advance down the wicket one too many times, with an efficient piece of wicket-keeping seeing him stumped. In at 3 was Rhodri Hughes (15), who looked impressive until he was dismissed with an unfortunate leading edge up in the air. Tom Nussey (33) and James Crockford (30) also displayed some stylish strokes to place Reed in a commanding position leading into the final overs of their innings. In the midst of this, Barlow started to accelerate, and swiftly passed 100 following a string of boundaries. Shortly after, this classy innings came to an end, with Richard dismissed for 111. Contributions from Ross Gardner (10), Owen Hughes (8) and Rob Lankester (19 not out) in the latter part of the innings saw Reed finish on 249-8 from their 40 overs. In response, the Camden openers made their intentions very clear from the off, with defensive shots being a rarity. After being punished for a couple of looseners, the experienced Steve Hughes quickly dismissed Camden’s opener in the first over. Sam Rice and Steve Hughes remained unfazed by Camden’s attacking start, with Hughes (8-1-27-2) picking up a second wicket in his exceptional spell. Rice (8-0-27-0) also proved economical, and was incredibly unlucky to not pick up a wicket in his spell after several chances came and went. [...]
Another disappointing result for the 1st XI as they lost to bottom club Sawbridgeworth by 8 wickets. Reed won the toss and batted first with a good opening partnership of 62 between Rob Lankester and Richard Johnson (18). However wickets fell regularly to catches and when Lankester was caught behind directly after the drinks break for 72, another collapse seemed likely, but a stubborn partnership between Jack Caine (56) and Richard Barlow (45) developed into an exciting one until Barlow was unluckily run-out by a direct throw. Eventually the innings subsided to 260 all out with 3 overs remaining. When Sawbridgeworth batted, the wicket had become easy paced and two century partnerships between Danny Wilson (91 not out), Bradley Oakes (64) and Rob Sanders (58) saw them home with 2 overs to spare. This despite some tight bowling and good ground fielding with Matt Bowles the most economical bowler only conceding 36 runs from his 10 overs. Reed must now eke out enough points from the remaining two games to stave off relegation. Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
Reed struck back after Luton had powered to 173-2 with Sri Lankan Trunkwala (55) and Naik (74) threatening to reach 300. However Tom Greaves once again spun out the middle order finishing with 4-44 from his 10 overs. It was then left to Ed Wharton (3-42) and Toby Fynn (2-22) to polish off the innings at 234. Rob Lankester claimed 4 victims behind the stumps. Luton are going to return to the Premier Division with their talented bowling attack, reliant on spin. With the help of some inauspicious shot selection they soon had Reed on the rack as both Homoyoon and Trunkwala with three wickets apiece left them 114 all out after only 30 overs. James Heslam tried hard to keep the innings going, but when he played on for 29 the game was over. Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
The thunderstorm which hit Reed on Friday night left the pitch one that 'Deadly' Derek Underwood used to dream about in the days of uncovered wickets. As a result it started to dry out, which meant batsmen had to play attritionally. From 84-1, Ampthill slumped to 111-8, mostly against Tom Greaves, who finished with career-best figures of 18-6-37-7. However, once again, Reed could not polish off the innings, not helped by 5 dropped catches in toto. Thus their opponents were well satisfied with a final total of 173. Sadly only Jack Caine showed the required application in Reed's innings. Although he scored 16 of their 62 runs, he faced nearly half the 19 overs it took veteran seamer, Will Sneath, (4-30) and Beds' left arm spinner, George Darlow,(6-31) to rout the hosts. "Not our best day at the office," remarked skipper Greaves, although it will be one for him to remember nevertheless. Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
Ed Wharton destroyed Flitwick's batting order taking 6-41 from his 20 overs, including a devastating spell of 6-4 either side of tea. This included the host's big gun, George Thurstance, but he could not account for his brother, Harry, who held the tail together with a defiant 89 not out. He frustrated Reed's bowlers, putting on over 100 runs for the eighth and ninth wickets, even surviving the 24 overs delivered in the final hour. Earlier, Reed had stuttered to 85-4 at lunch, having used up over half of their overs, only Rob Lankester looking comfortable against Flitwick's new ball attack on an unusually green wicket. He and Stuart Smith (44) then put together a half century partnership which swung the momentum Reed's way until he was stumped one short of a deserved 50. Just like last week, Smith provided the support for Tom Greaves (31) and Sean Tidey (23 not out) to accelerate the scoring just achieving 3 batting bonus points with a final total of 225-8. This looked more than enough for a victory until Thurstance steered Flitwick to 162-8 and left Reed frustrated with a winning draw and 16 points. Match report submitted by Peter Wholley.
Reed overcame high flying Dunstable in an exciting, low scoring, encounter on The Green. Toby Fynn sent back both the opposition's openers cheaply, but once again skipper, Tom Greaves, turned to spin and Sean Tidey soon rewarded him with a couple of wickets. However a stand of 84 beetween Sam Cherry (65) and Matthew Woodcock (52), who survived some sharp chances in the field, appeared to be taking the game away. After lunch though,Tidey and Greaves (2-82) took control as Dunstable lost their last 6 wickets for 39 and were bowled out for 192 in 51 overs, giving Reed 8 more precious overs to win the game. Tidey kept the match ball, finishing with splendid figures of 17-3-48-6. The home side needed the cushion of those extra overs as the Cherry brothers kept a tight rein on their reply. Only Ed Wharton's customary rapid 41 mastered the early bowling. Indeed Reed slipped to 90-5 after tea, but Stuart Smith had been patiently playing himself in. With a match winning innings he scored an unbeaten 62 over two and a half hours facing 150 balls. The other batsmen all contributed by surviving more than 20 deliveries, many from Reed's previous nemesis, the dangerouus Luke Cherry, who took 4-60 from his 21 overs. Late impetus from Greaves (19) and fittingly, Sean Tidey (28 not out) saw Reed to 193-7 to complete a hard fought victory and with other results going their way, Reed moved up three places to third in the Championship. (However, Richard will be livid that 6 match balls in addition to Sean's trophy were lost with some massive maximums, despite neither side reaching 200 runs!) Match report submitted by Peter Wholley.
James Heslam continued his scoring streak on Saturday against Leverstock Green, but this time converting a fifty to a commanding unbeaten 107. He came in following a splendid opening partnership of 83 between Ed Wharton (55) and Phil Frenay (34) and benefited from he support of a classy 26 from Rob Lankester. However, the latter's fabled reverse sweep rather unluckily proved his downfall. After that, Stuart Smith (20) and Ed Garrott (29) both accompanied Heslam in stands of 70 to give Reed a substantial total of 299-8 , albeit on a hard, dry track conducive to batting. Lewis Koch, whose 90 led to Reed's defeat in the opening game of the season.was comprehensively bowled by Toby Fynn and Jack Caine dismissed his partner, Harry Blagdon (38) just as he was beginning to threaten. Only the talented Australian, Sol Tomlinson, looked capable of spoiling the party until the introduction of Sean Tidey from his stint behind the stumps immediately induced a rash shot to curtail his explosive innings on 44. It was then left to Tidey (3-43) and, inevitably, Tom Greaves (5-70) to spin the rest out for 198 on an increasingly dusty pitch. Match Report submitted by Peter Wholley.
What should have been an away fixture for Reed was played at the Freman Oval as requested by their opponents Mill Hill Village. This allowed their ground to be used later that evening, to celebrate a 150 years of cricket. On another glorious sunny day. Reed lost the toss and were put in the field. Brilliant opening spells from Neil Haslam (10 overs for 18) and Kieran McKinna (7 overs for 26) who both bowled without luck had kept the score to a premium. The returning Ian Roberts was then thrown the ball, and asked to continue where he'd left off 2 years ago. After a rusty first over he started to find his line and length and finished with 1 for 36 from his 10. Left-arm spinner, Sam Rice, also made his seasonal debut and in all 7 bowlers were used as Mill Hill's batters reached a target of 275-4 at tea. Reed's reply needed to be steady and secure, but in the 5th over Garrott was brilliantly caught at 2nd slip for 2. Reed now had to consolidate, and to a certain extent they did. Peter Baker (17), Mike Robertson (33), Jack Childs (29) and young McKinna (top-scoring with 39) all getting in, but no one going on to make the big score that could have made the difference. Then Reed's last 3 batsmen all got out for ducks! Reed had been bowled out for 145 in the 35th over; defeated by a 130 runs. All in all this was another disappointing day in what is becoming a difficult season for the 3s. Match Report submitted by Paul Garrott.