On a scorching Sunday Denham won the toss and batted. It looked a good decision as openers Frohlich and Nicholas provided a century partnership for the first wicket. Frohlich reached 50 with a series of punishing blows before being bowled just before drinks for 54. Josh Simpson joined the skipper at the crease and continued his good form with the bat and began to build another partnership. Nicholas looked in ominous form but when he was caught on the boundary for 75, the Denham innings took a turn for the worse. Simpson continued to play well and made 43, but no one else was able to make any meaningful contribution and Denham’s innings closed on 204/8.
Acting tea lady Sir Stuart Payne provided an average to poor spread, but this was still enjoyed by the hungry players.
204 looked to be enough bearing in mind Denham had bowled the casuals out for 103 earlier in the season. However this time the visitors were in much better form. As the Casuals were always up with the required rate, Denham were forced to take wickets to stem the flow of runs. When Tomlinson (2-18) had both danger men caught on the boundary, it looked like Denham would be home and hosed. Wickets from Nicholas (3-24) left the Casuals needing 25 from the final 3 overs with a couple of wickets in hand. However a poor over from Joe O’Hara left 5 to win off the final over with one wicket left. Had injured opener and former Denham stalwart, Davenport not returned to the crease, Denham would have won by default, but he was able to stand at the non-striker’s end as the Uxbridge number 9 spanked the winning runs with 2 balls to spare.
A great game played in a good spirit, which kept swinging both ways ended in an unfortunate loss for Denham.
Denham had an enjoyable if one-sided game against Harrowdene on Sunday at the Lane. Asked to bat, Denham openers Nicholas and Frohlich quickly began to put the visitors’ bowling to the sword. However Frohlich then inexplicably trod on his stumps and was out for 11. Mahmood then came and went quickly, but Nicholas and Rai continued the onslaught with Nicholas going to a hundred in around 25 overs. When he was out for 101, Josh Simpson came to the wicket and made a confident 47, falling three runs short of second XI selection. (2s skipper and father Jeff had promised it had he made a 50!). Rai completed his hundred with a six over cover and the Denham innings closed on 289/5 from their 40 overs.
Some excellent home-made sausage rolls and quiche were the highlight of a well made tea, that was hopefully enjoyed by the opposition after their long toil in the field.
For Denham, the Marmanator opened the bowling with the wily veteran Pete Schembri. Schembri was inspired as he ripped through the Harrowdene top order, taking six of the first 7 wickets putting Denham in total command. There were 3 catches from Nicholas, a superb over the head catch from Simpson and a casual one hander from Frohlich. Debuting colt Jack Tomlinson also enjoyed his first senior outing, bowling tightly and picking up 2 wickets. With Harrowdene 89/9, the ball was nudged down to third man. Harish gave chase. Slowly. He finally picked up the ball and hurled it in underarm back towards the keeper, however with the batsman ambling back to his ground, Harish’s inadvertent direct hit ran him out by a foot, leading to raucous screeches and celebrations for one of Denham’s all time leading buffoons, giving Denham victory by a massive 200 runs!
Denham travelled to Knotty Green on Sunday without 4 regular players so were fielding a weaker team than usual. Alex Marman (1/25) bowled a good opening spell but the other bowlers found it hard to bowl to the dangerous Hanif who went on to make 111 after being caught off a no ball early on. Knotty Green made 247 from their 40 overs.
Denham lost Simpson Senior early on but captain James Nicholas got off to a flyer, dispatching the Knotty Green opening bowler (Growler) to all parts of the ground, making 32 before a short pitched ball kept low and he was bowled. Roland Frohlich played well for 24 but when Dave Tang went cheaply it looked as though Denham’s chances would be gone. Denham were eventually bowled out for 129, but a bright cameo from Pete Schembri (25) was enjoyed, as was 30 from Simpson Jnr who showed his Dad how to bat with patience. Hopefully he gave him a few tips in the car on the way home.....
Team: Nicholas (c), Simpson Sr, Frolich, Tang, Simpson Jr, Payne, Schembri, Marman, O'Hara, Coulson, Rikki
Denham entertained Woodlands in a cracking game on Sunday. After winning the toss Denham batted first and were going along nicely at 61/1 from the first ten overs. But it became harder to get the ball away when the slower bowlers came on and Denham made just 30 more runs from the next 10 overs leaving them 90/3 at drinks. A decent score still looked on the cards if skipper Nicholas could stay at the crease but when he was run out for 66, it looked like Denham may struggle to reach 150. However Braithwaite (24*) and Sir Stuart Payne (24) took the score to 174/6 at the close.
In reply, Woodlands started well, but the miserly bowling of Grover 1-7 from 8 overs and Magner who went for just 18 from his 8, kept Woodlands well behind the required rate. Nicholas and Mahmood both took 3 wickets in the middle order and it looked like Denham were on course for victory. However the Woodlands captain came to the crease and started playing his shots from ball one. He should have been caught off the bowling of Nicholas early on but a relatively simple chance went down at mid off. He was dropped a further 3 times as Woodlands got closer and closer to their target. It eventually came down to the final ball with Woodlands needing 2 runs to win. The ball was hit hard, but in the air to extra cover where the catch was again dropped. The throw came in to the bowlers end for what should have been an easy run out but Mahmood fumbled the ball and Woodlands got home for the second run and the victory. An exciting game, but one Denham should have won comfortably if they had taken their catches.
Denham entertained the Uxbridge Casuals on Sunday who included former Denham player Graham Davenport, making a welcome return to the Lane. Skipper Nicholas won an important toss on a hot day and so was able to bat. Frohlich (32) and Mahmood (50) were the only two batsmen to really get in and after a promising start Denham’s innings stuttered to 166 all out in the final over.
Clint O’Hara’s tea was one of the best of the season so far and enjoyed by all.
Uxbridge Casuals looked fairly comfortable reaching 50 for the loss of just two wickets while scoring at the required rate. It was then that star bowler Mahmood was brought into the attack to rip through the middle order. Harish Bhatt was also in fine form picking up 3 wickets bowling an excellent “keeper line” and getting some good turn. Nicholas, Simpson and Treacy were also among the wickets as the opposition were eventually dismissed for just over 100.
Denham entertained Richmond Legbreakers on Sunday in glorious sunny conditions. A rare win of the toss from skipper James Nicholas meant that Denham would bat first. Nicholas and Dave Maynard began steadily building the Denham innings before Maynard was given out LBW for 19 to a ball which kept very low. Bobby Rai (43) and Nicholas (27) took the score up to over 80 before Nicholas missed a full toss and was bowled. He walked off to the dressing rooms with the wise words of Sir Stuart Payne ringing in his ears. “Fools gold! Pat it back”.
Faisal Mahmood (30) continued to push the score along but a flutter of wickets left it looking like a below par score was on the cards. Enter Joe O’Hara with 7 overs to go, who had only recently turned up. He bludgeoned 60 “absolutely massive” runs in no time and with the support of Bitchie Raithwaite were able to put on 61 for the 7th wicket. Denham finished on 226/7 from their 40 overs. Shot of the innings did not however come from any of the aforementioned. It came from Denham’s under 13’s skipper Josh Simpson, with a glorious cover drive for four!
Tea was then enjoyed, although not without the noticeable omission of Mrs Nicholas’ famed flapjacks.
Denham started the defence of their target well with three quick wickets, Clint O’Hara picking up two of them. A strong partnership followed, thanks in part to the filth of Harish Bhatt who was removed from the attack after two overs. The Legbreakers passed 100 with no further loss and looked on course to give Denham a run for their money. It was at that point Mahmood and John “Bag of Potato” Magner were brought into the attack. Mahmood quickly took 3 wickets, leaving the Legbreakers reeling. It was left to Josh Simpson to remove the dangerous Richmond captain thanks to a good catch from Raithwaite, before Magner took two in three balls. Simpson then rearranged the stumps of the final batsman to give Denham a win of about 100 runs.
Denham CC won the toss and chose to bowl and took regular Wealdstone wickets, with both Nicolas and Bhatt taking 3 a piece, the away side all out for 91 off of 29 overs. Following a tea which finally featured flapjacks, Tang and Mahmood opened the Denham batting and provided a solid platform before the arrival of Tang's missus sparked a bad shot, returning a catch to the bowler for 20. Mahmood fell soon after for 28 and from there the batting was abject at best with only Rulach offering any significant resistance with 14. This left Schembri to get 10 runs off of 4 overs - never before had a target seemed so large! Talking of large, Bhatt came in to face the last ball of the innings, needing 2 to win and 1 to draw. He was run out going for a single, failing to ground his bat. Denham lost by one run.
Denham CC got off to a winning start in their traditional curtain raiser against Old Eastcotians. Featuring a mixture of 1st and 2nd XI players, skipper Simpson won the toss and chose to bat, perhaps with an eye to getting back in the pavillion in time to see his beloved Arsenal play Wigan in the FA Cup.
Denham were soon 44-4, with Mohammed, Bhatt, Anwar and Tang back in the hutch without having troubled the scorers significantly. The innings was wonderfully steadied by the hitting of Mehta and steady play of Rees, who between them managed a 104 run partnership, with Mehta scoring 53 and Rees 47. Denham finished on a wholesome 190-7 off their 40 overs.
Following a flapjack-less Sheila Nicholas tea, Denham's bowling attack was lead by O'Hara and Simpson, who restricted the Eastcotian batsmen well. Their first wicket fell when keeper Bhatt realised that an Eastcotian batsman had not grounded his bat and was duly run out. A further wicket apiece for Simpson, O'Hara and Tang meant that Old Eastcotians were 90-4 off of 20 overs, the game delitcately poised for the finale. In a similiar fashion to the Denham innings, the Eastcoatian middle order settled and were ready to take the game away from Denham when a sharp piece of fielding by Tang, running in from deep mid wicket, effected a run out to break the partnership. O'Hara took a catch of the bowling of Mehta to bring the score to 120-6, with both sides still in with a chance to win.
Just as Old Eastcotians threatened again to take the game away from Denham, Colts Captain Josh Simpson took a sharp catch at slip to remove the dangerous Samba. Tang was brought back into the attack and bowled much tighter than in his first spell, managing to extract some turn out of the wicket, and in tandem with the tidy bowling of Anwar, applied the brakes to the Eastcotian innings. Eventually the scoreboard pressure told on the batting side and they were eventually all out for 138.
Denham XI: Mohammed, R Bhatt, Anwar, Tang, H Mehta, Rees, Josh Simpson, Jeff Simpson, Schembri, O'Hara
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