Knebworth Park secured promotion from Saracens Herts League Division 3a with a 187-run victory over North Enfield – their eighth win in a row.
It leaves them 119 points clear of third place with three matches left but still seven adrift of leaders West Herts who also continue winning
Opening bats Louis Champion 68 (pictured, phone: Mike Jones) and Josh Roseberry 65 set them on their way with a rapid 137-run opening stand at almost a run-a-ball, both playing a string of exquisite shots that raced across the rapid outfield.
Archie Stephens 54 and after a brief falter in the innings Charlie Randall 37 and Kobie Richmond 27 lifted the total onto a season’s best 321 for 9.
Opening pacemen Randall 3 for 24, who extracted extra bounce and pace from the easy paced wicket, and Niels Hart 2 for 24 then had the visitors innings in disarray at 34 for 5, most of the wickets assisted by excellent catching, especially a brilliant diving one hander by Kobie Richmond who came to the game straight from stepping off a plane after a long flight from a school trip to Malaysia.
North Enfield sought to rebuild the innings but in the end were all out for 134, Alex Richmond 3 for 26 and a wicket apiece for Amelia Kemp and Champion completing the task.
The seconds notched up a crucial six wicket win over Letchworth 3rds in their effort to avoid relegation.
Winning the toss and bravely choosing to bowl in the scorching temperature, Knebworth stuck to their task despite the heat with Letchworth eventually setting 246-7, all seven bowlers taking one wicket apiece.
Park set about the chase in bullish fashion punishing anything loose, with the score at 72-1 from ten the foundation had been laid. Opener Ross Courtney punished anything loose in a very useful 47. After Mark Woods (18) and Wayne Hunt (21) there was still much work to do. Asif Mahmood 80 not out and Jack Randall 41 not out guided them home to their required target of 247 for 4 wickets. Asif after a shaky statt settled nicely punishing anything short, whilst Randall ticked the scored board along playing a very mature and supportive knock.
A big win for Knebworth with relegation rivals Radlett up next.
To complete a full set of wins for the club, we won our Home Counties Women’s League Division One match on Sunday in toppling high riding Binfield (Berkshire).
Twice Park bounced back when they seemed doomed.
Tilly Larkins’ patient 20 led the resistance after a clatter of early wickets and then Amelia Kemp 17 and Kezia Hassall 26 led them to 134 for 8 off their 35 overs.
In reply the visitors were powering on in the chase and at 70 for 3 only one result seemed likely, but Alice Baird 2-34, Hassall 4-21 and Catherine Cirkel 2-8 triggered a collapse to 117 all out.