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Bishop's Stortford captain Dom Chatfield hits record-breaking Minor Counties century for Hertfordshire against Northumberland


By Michael Vaughton


Dom Chatfield will be hoping to help Hertfordshire climb the Unicorns Minor Counties Championship, Eastern Division after a record-breaking knock against Northumberland.

The Bishop's Stortford captain, who will be lining up for the county at home to Lincolnshire at Hertford from this Sunday (August 18), scored a superb 174 not out last time out in a draw Jesmond.

Chatfield carried his bat in what was a career-best innings and also the highest total made by a Herts batsman against Northumberland since records began in 1895.

Dom Chatfield. Picture: Vikki Lince
Dom Chatfield. Picture: Vikki Lince

He shared an opening stand of 162 with Potters Bar's Steve Gale before putting on 107 alongside Blackheath's Tanweer Sikander for the fourth wicket.

During his five hours and 34 minutes at the crease, Chatfield batted for 90 overs, faced 283 balls and struck 15 fours and six maximums as he compiled his second county ton.

His efforts helped Herts post 370 for 6 in response to Northumberland's 305 for 8, with the hosts then closing on 184 for 4 in their second innings.

Tommy Burslem in action for Stortford against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince
Tommy Burslem in action for Stortford against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince

Herts, who are second from bottom in the standings, are aiming to finish the season strongly and also still have Cambridgeshire to play.

Meanwhile, a heavy rain storm saved Bishop's Stortford from defeat with Potters Bar on the brink of victory in their Saracens Hertfordshire League, Premier Division contest.

The visitors only needed six more runs to win, but were left frustrated as the downpour brought a halt to proceedings at Cricketfield Lane.

Stortford skipper Chatfield opted to bat first against the third-placed side and another disastrous start saw out-of-form Eddie Ballard dismissed without scoring, followed soon after by Adam Bassingthwaighte (5) as they slipped to 24 for 2.

Reece Hussain at the crease for Stortford against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince
Reece Hussain at the crease for Stortford against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince

Chatfield, having been given not out, was then adjudged bowled after a lengthy conversation between the umpires as to whether the ball had hit the stumps or rebounded from the wicketkeeper's gloves to leave the hosts on 37 for 3.

Tommy Burslem joined in-form batsman Reece Hussain at the crease and together they confidently added 73 runs before the latter was run out for 63 when looking like he was well on his way to a second consecutive century.

Burslem was bowled for 31 taking the score to a worrying 123 for 5, from which point Sam Davis marshalled the remainder of the innings. He played several pleasing shots and reached a fine 50 for his first half-century since joining the club this year.

Reece Hussain and Tommy Burslem grab a single against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince
Reece Hussain and Tommy Burslem grab a single against Potters Bar. Picture: Vikki Lince

Stortford were all out for 187 with Potters Bar bowlers Luke Chapman and Jigar Mehta each taking four wickets.

Things looked good early on for Stortford with the ball as Potters Bar slipped to 27 for 3. Tim Smith trapped Essex pro Rishi Patel lbw for a duck, while Davis, bowling with pace, dismissed Rehan Hassan and the prolific Steve Gale cheaply.

James Scott was bowled by Chris Thomas and Stortford felt they in with a chance with Potters Bar on 56 for 4.

Harrison Palmer joined opener Charlie Scott, who had quietly moved on to 27, and the pair added 72 quite comfortably before the latter was bowled by Smith for a fine 76.

Palmer went on to reach 50, but Potters Bar were just short of their target on 182 for 5 when the heavens opened. They will ponder over the pacing of their innings and wonder if they could have been more positive earlier which might have seen them win.

"We were more competitive, but the 50-50 decisions seem to be going against us," said Chatfield.

"We were in with a chance when Potters Bar were 56 for 4, but just couldn't find another breakthrough and, in the end, we were fortunate the weather intervened."

The second XI lost heavily to Datchworth who reached the required 128 for the loss of just one wicket after bowling Stortford out for 127.

The third XI's match with Hatfield Heath in Tees Law Herts & Essex League, Division Two was abandoned, while the fourth XI lost a low-scoring affair against Ilford Catholics IV in Division Five, managing to score just 67 before their opponents reaching the target for the loss of five wickets.

On Sunday, Stortford Ladies were defeated by a very talented Hursley Park team in the Women's Southern League, Premier Division.

The rain again intervened, but enough overs had been bowled in the second innings to constitute a match.

At that point, Stortford had reached 76 for 6 in response to Hursley Park's 254 for 7 and the latter were awarded the win.



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