Sampson’s ton in vain, but Reed live to fight another day

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.

Cooper almost steals victory for Reed

Mitchell Cooper came close to rescuing a victory for Reed 1st XI in a hard-fought contest away to 4th placed Hoddesdon. With captain Tom Greaves unfortunately injured for the match, vice-captain William Heslam, captaining his first game for the club's men's side, won the toss and elected to bowl in cloudy conditions on a pitch which looked like it would offer some assistance to the bowlers despite a decent week of weather. This proved to be the case as Toby Fynn (10 overs, 4 wickets for 39) moved the ball around beating the bat with an impressive line and length to reduce Hoddesdon to 79-5 with Mitchell Cooper (7-1-39) also picking up a good wicket. A decent partnership was then forged between the hard-hitting Rob Jones (69) and Martin Brown (18) who survived a big lbw shout first ball. However Sean Tidey (8.3-2-21) and Alex Mutucumarana (7-3-45) both bowled well and when Brown was dismissed by Mutucumarana, quickly followed by another two wickets at 142-8 it was looking very good for Reed. Unfortunately a speedy 9th wicket partnership followed as Rhys and Rob Jones opened their shoulders before Mutucumarana and Tidey wrapped things up at 191 all out. Despite the wicket offering something to the bowlers, with short boundaries and a lightning fast outfield Reed were confident if they could bat better than in some of their recent games the match was easily winnable. This looked the case as Rich Wharton (34) and William Heslam (37) set off fluently in pursuit of the target. At 63-0 off 14 overs the game was well in Reed’s hands, however when Heslam was really getting going he went to an unlikely mis-timed shot off the swing bowling of [...]

Fine knock by “Wembley Will” ends in a draw!

Reed scrambled a draw against Hoddesdon in an exciting game, which went down to the wire. An excellent partnership of 187 between South African Neels Bergh (92) and Todd Sturdy (113) formed the backbone of the visitors’ 262-9, after Ed Wharton had taken two wickets in the first over. When Sean Tidey and Tom Greaves had accounted for the top scorers, Wharton roared back to finish with 14-2-62-6. A century stand between William Heslam and Chris Jackson (41) gave Reed a chance of winning, but when Richard Wharton (28) was run out and Heslam stumped for a fine knock of 95, the lower order were forced to go hard. As a result several perished to brilliant catches in the deep. Bergh (19-2-68-5) was again the danger man with his leg-spin. Hoddesdon squeezed 20 overs into the last hour in a desperate effort to winkle out their hosts, but Mitchell Cooper calmly played out time, leaving Reed on 226-9. Report submitted by Peter Wholley.