It was a narrow defeat for the Thirds in an exciting game with unbeaten Watton-at-Stone. A well-earned 17 points, though, saw them move off the bottom of the table.
After losing the toss and being asked to field, Park made a great start as Ian Woods (2-48) picked up the wicket of the Watton opener with the third ball of the match.
It then took till the tenth over until the next wicket came with the score on 46.
A flurry of wickets then fell as Ollie O’Brien (3-32) picked up three wickets in five overs to leave Watton with plenty of work to do at 71-6.
As a hot afternoon wore on though, the Watton skipper began to dig in and gave them a foothold in the match.
Jack Randall (2-27), Ben Childs (2-25) and Karl Padalia (1-30) continued their good form but, ably assisted by the lower order, the Watton skipper took the score to 214 before finally being bowled out in the 48th over.
It had a familiar feel as Park began their chase poorly, falling to 29-4 in the 11th over.
A partnership of 39 between Ian Woods, pictured, and Jonathan Cirkel steadied the ship before Cirkel was dismissed for a breezy 20.
Scott Page (14) continued to support Woods as they took the score past 100 and were well up with the run rate. However, with only four wickets left, their target of 215 looked a long way off.
When Karl Padalia came to the crease with the score at 102-7 Park began to take the game to Watton, putting on 66 before Woods was dismissed for 66 with the score on 168 and Park well in the game.
Ben Childs (20) and Padalia continued to edge Park closer to their target, taking the score to 186 when Padalia was dismissed for an excellent 48.
Good running between Childs and Jack Randall continued to keep Park in the game but it was just a step to far as Childs was dismissed in the 49th over, the innings ending just 12 runs short of their target at 203.
KPCC IV 123 all out, Hatfield and Crusaders III 124-5
Knebworth Park IVs fell to a five wicket defeat in a tightly contest fixture against Hatfield and Crusaders III.
Batting first, Park lost early wickets but were bolstered by a solid 23 from Phil Wheeler. Despite this though, Park fell to 41-4 after 17 overs.
A partnership of 33 between John Inman and Robert Crowe steadied the ship but another flurry of wickets left Park in serious trouble at 80-8.
No.7 Kunal Sharma was able to manage the tail to a total of 123 all out, and finished unbeaten on 26.
In reply, the Hatfield batsmen batted aggressively and quickly set about the bowling.
At 80-2 the game looked all but over but with the fall of the opener for 59, suddenly Park found themselves in with a real chance.
Two more quick wickets fell and at 88-5 there was all to play for.
Unfortunately, Park were unable to press home the advantage and could feel aggrieved as three very close decisions all went in the batting side’s favour in the space of three overs.
Ultimately, the Hatfield batsmen were able to survive these close calls and wrap up the victory with 22 overs to spare.