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Reece Hussain hits 60 as Bishop's Stortford lose to Radlett in Saracens Hertfordshire League, Premier Division


By Michael Vaughton


Bishop's Stortford suffered back-to-back defeats in the Saracens Hertfordshire League, Premier Division as they succumbed by 80 runs at home to Radlett on Saturday.

Still smarting after the previous week's defeat at Luton Town & Indians, the hosts were hoping for a change in fortunes, but instead encountered a strong Radlett team performance.

The visitors won the toss and decided to bat first on a warm and sunny day at Cricketfield Lane. Openers Tom Jenkins and Joe Cooke got them off to a fast start by putting on 47 for the first wicket before the former fell for 15 to a smart catch by wicketkeeper Joe Hawkins from Travis Hussain's bowling.

Cooke (43) continued to play some crisp shots in partnership with Kabir Toor before becoming Hawkins second victim, this time off Simon Lindop, taking the score to 90 for 2.

Radlett captain Toor was in great form as he added 65 in partnership with Nathan Smith (32) and then 60 with Fraser Crawford (17) before he was caught at long off by Reece Hussain off Lindop having made an excellent 89.

The away side were 217 for 5 with nine overs still to bat and a big score looked likely, and some fine hitting from lower-order batsmen Muhammed Adil Zareef (42) and Chris Arul (17) took them to 290 for 7 at the end of 50 overs. The total also included 30 extras, 21 of those being wide balls.

Stortford were mindful of falling behind the scoring rate as they had done in their previous defeat so wanted a good start from Eddie Ballard and Adam Bassingthwaighte.

This did not happen, however, as the in-form Ballard (4) was comprehensively bowled by Nathan Smith off the eighth ball of the innings.

Bassingthwaighte, 18, was batting well with Reece Hussain and they got the team score to 56. But the latter hit a straight drive which the bowler got a touch to and the teenager was very unluckily run out at the non-striker's end for 27.

Captain Dom Chatfield joined Reece Hussain and it was clear that a significant partnership was required, and they added 86, but the Stortford scoring rate never matched that of Radlett and they fell behind against tight bowling.

With the score on 142, Reece Hussain was caught for 60 and the skipper followed one run later taking the score to 143 for 4.

Only Sam Davis (25) of the lower-order batsmen contributed and, from a position of being 142 for 2 at one point, Stortford lost their last eight wickets for just 68 runs and were bowled out for 210.

"This was a poor performance from us, but, to be fair, Radlett outplayed us in every element of the game," said Chatfield.

"We will have to improve our all-round performance and quickly as we have some tough matches over the coming weeks."

Next up for fourth-placed Stortford is a trip to second-from-bottom Potters Bar this Saturday.

The disappointing results continued for the club as the seconds, thirds and fourths also lost at the weekend.

The seconds recovered from a precarious position to end on 217 against Letchworth Garden City II in Saracens 3A as Tom Waring hit 96 and Tommy Burslem compiled 71.

But Letchworth reached the total for the loss of just three wickets to leave Stortford bottom of the table and still searching for their first win of the summer.

The thirds were bowled out for 134 by Little Hallingbury as they suffered a five-wicket defeat in Tees Law Herts & Essex League, Division Two.

And Roger Parker (58) helped the fourths score 210 from their 40 overs against Hawks in Division Five before their opponents chased down the total in just 27 overs for the loss of four wickets.

The weekend gloom was lifted by Stortford Ladies as they gained a fine win over Mildenhall to reach the National T20 Cup regional finals.

Mildenhall scored 113 for 8 before Stortford chased it down without losing a wicket thanks to unbeaten knocks of 55 and 48 from captain Sarah Walker and Anna Swan respectively.



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