Whilst the below reports quite rightly highlight last weekends double success, we all want to wish Rory & the 3rd XI the best of luck for their final promotion push Saturday. Although no longer in their hands, a win could still get them promoted if results go their way, we're all behind you!
1st XI vs Wanstead & Snaresbook (Home) – League.
Chelmsford 192/9 from 45 overs.
Wanstead 190 all out from 44.4 overs.
Chelmsford win by 2 runs.
Chelmsford Cricket Club were confirmed as champions of the Essex 1st XI Premier Division on Saturday after claiming victory over second placed Wanstead & Snaresbrook CC by two runs. Although the win was clinched with just two runs and two balls to spare, Chelmsford only needed to take three wickets during Wanstead’s innings to be confirmed as champions. Still with one game remaining, it was an extremely remarkable season for the Chelmer Park boys which saw them take 13 wins out of the 17 played, with two games abandoned, one drawn and only one lost, which was away to Wanstead.
Chelmsford’s fantastic season wasn’t just illustrated through the performances of the first team though. Their second team were also crowned champions of their league, the Essex 2nd XI Premier Division, on Saturday. Incredibly they remain unbeaten all season with 14 wins out of 17 played, with two abandoned and one draw.
The 3rd XI of Chelmsford Cricket Club are within contention of the Essex 3rd XI Division One title. They require a win in the last game on the coming Saturday which could see Chelmsford take 3 league titles in one season but they rely on results to go their way.
After a brief midday drizzle, play begun at Chelmer Park with the hosts placed into bat by the visitors, as Wanstead captain Joe Ellis-Grewal won the toss and elected to field first. The choice paid off, more or less instantly, as the extremely-inform Chelmsford opening batsman and captain, Jack Sterland, edged one behind in the 3rd over. Even though he was caught by keeper Jonathan Das from the bowling of Eshun Kalley for 6 off 14, it did see Sterland surpass the thousand league run milestone by one run; therefore, putting him on a phenomenal 1001 runs.
Wanstead had Chelmsford at 8/1 after the first three overs and things got worse for the home side as number three Ben Clifford was bowled by Kalley in the 5th over via an off-cutter. B. Clifford departed for 5 off 10 and Chelmsford were 15/2.
James Clifford was next in for the hosts and with opener Dan Hagen the two were looking good, seeing off nearly seven overs together but on the last ball of the 12th over J. Clifford played one into the hands of Nabeel Aziz from Zain Shahzad’s bowling. The Chelmsford number 4 left the field with 7 off 23 and his side at 32/3 after 12 overs.
Robert Catchpole was next to join Hagen at the crease but only a handful of runs were added to the score before the next wicket was claimed by Wanstead. Four overs after J. Clifford’s departure, Hagen was to join him as he nicked one behind to J. Das off Kishen Velani’s bowling and had to exit the field for 19 runs from 43 balls. Chelmsford were reduced to 46/4 from 16 overs and were on their way to collapsing to a low score.
However, Oliver Devenish teamed up with Catchpole and an extremely important partnership blossomed between the two. Across 15 overs, Catchpole and Devenish put on a highly appreciated 76-run partnership before Wanstead could break the pair in the 32nd over. The wicket of Catchpole came when he was adjudged LBW by the umpire from the bowling of Wanstead captain Ellis-Grewal, for a crucial 49 off 61, thus painfully missing out on a half century by one run. After Catchpole’s efforts with Devenish, Chelmsford were boosted to 124/5 after 32 overs.
Devenish orchestrated another essential middle order partnership after Jack Cook’s introduction to the game. Devenish and J. Cook combined throughout 10 overs at the crease together to score a 50-run partnership which put their side on 172/5 before Wanstead could claim their next wicket. After smashing one for four to reach the 50-partnership with Devenish, J. Cook was stumped on the next ball by keeper J. Das off Jahansher Akbar’s bowling. J. Cook departed for a very good 25 off 40.
Devenish secured his half century off 66 balls in the 42nd over after spending 89 minutes at the crease and hitting six 4s.
With 43 overs gone Chelmsford were 177/6 with two overs left of their innings.
The visitors took their next wicket in the penultimate over as Brad Green was bowled by Shahzad for 4 off 4. In the last over of the first innings, Kalley took the two wickets of Liam Keaney and Mark Drain and Chelmsford finished on 192/9 off 45 overs, with Devenish remaining undefeated on 57 not out from 72 balls.
Wanstead started their innings similarly to Chelmsford as they lost their opening batsman in the 3rd over after Tom Simmons played one into the hands of Dan Hagen off Keaney’s delivery. Simmons left with just 1 off 10 and Wanstead were 19/1. Robin Das was next in at number three and united with Velani to put on a superb 84-run partnership across nearly 18 overs to put slight worry in the minds of the Chelmsford faithful. The second wicket comradery from the two saw them reach their 50-partnership in the 17th over and Velani made his half century in the 20th over after facing 48 balls and hitting four 4s and three 6s in 62 minutes. However, the Wanstead opener couldn’t extend from that as he was bowled by Ben Waring in the next over which ended his innings on a positive strike rate with a very good 54 off 51. Wanstead were 103/2 after 21 overs.
Adnan Akram joined R. Das but only briefly as he sliced a Waring delivery to gully/point in which Hagen was situated and departed for 2 off 16. The ticking off of Wanstead’s third wicket meant that Chelmsford had mathematically secured the league title, but celebrations were only minimal as the hosts were still concentrated on getting the victory. Chelmsford placed Wanstead at 113/3 after 27 overs.
J. Das and R. Das were the two batsmen at the crease following Akram’s departure but the brothers couldn’t form a formidable partnership as keeper Green stumped J. Das in the 29th over following a Waring delivery. J. Das exited with 11 from 6.
The next over saw another wicket fall when Arfan Akram was bowled by Devenish for a duck after facing six balls and Wanstead fell to 131/5 after 30 overs.
Wanstead had something to celebrate when R. Das reached his well fought half-century in the 31st over, after 95 balls and 90 minutes in which he hit five 4s.
Ellis-Grewal joined R. Das but the Wanstead captain was the next to depart after he scored 4 off 12. His wicket was taken after he played one into J. Clifford from Devenish’s bowling in the 34th over. The away side were 146/6.
After witnessing a plethora of batsmen fall, R. Das was joined by Nabeel Aziz but it only took Chelmsford three overs to take the wicket of the new batsman. Aziz was caught and bowled by J. Clifford in the 37th over after he chipped one straight back where it came from. Wanstead were reduced to 162/7 and Chelmsford were sniffing for victory.
R. Das introduced Kalley to the crease as his sixth batting partner of the innings but after three and a half overs, R. Das lost another partner as Kalley was adjudged LBW from the umpire off J. Clifford’s bowling. Kalley left with 2 runs to his name from 13 balls and his side were 170/8 after 41 overs.
Four balls after Kalley’s wicket was taken, Chelmsford claimed the 9th wicket when Keaney had Shahzad trapped LBW for 3 off 3.
Wanstead were 177/9 after 42 overs and required 16 runs to win from 3 overs at a run-rate of just over 5, or exactly 5 to draw.
With Chelmsford edging closer to victory and only needing one wicket to reach it, Wanstead’s last wicket stand aimed to see off the remaining three overs whilst scoring 5 runs per over. An incredibly tight finish was wrapped up with Chelmsford claiming victory after a brilliant stumping from Green off J. Clifford’s bowling in the penultimate ball of the last over after R. Das looked to hit the two needed to win. R. Das finished on a classy 75 runs off 134 balls but couldn’t get the last two needed for Wanstead to win.
After this brilliantly close finish and entertaining match between Chelmsford and Wanstead, the 2021 title belongs to Chelmsford with Wanstead and Brentwood to battle it out for second place on the last game of the season. The runners-up position, which is currently separated by two points, will be confirmed next week after Brentwood welcome Chelmsford and Wanstead host Colchester.
2nd XI vs Oakfield Parkonians (Away) – League.
Oakfield Parkonians 169/8 all out from 40 overs.
Chelmsford 171/5 from 36.2 overs.
Chelmsford won by 5 wickets.
The 2's confirmed the League title with yet another Plan A game plan executed in the usual 2's manner, although that is not to say that there were not moments of anxious doubt, knowing that the first target was 7 wickets to secure the 3 bonus points that would clinch the title.
Cran won the the toss and stuck OP's in.
The opening batsmen moved to 33 without loss in 8 overs off Harry Arnold (4-0-13-0) and Fergs the Venerable (8-1-28-0).
Cran, visibly oozing unimpressedness, replaced Harry with Rob Hayto's off-spin, which proved effective with the score on 50, the belligerent Bhavik departing for 31, well caught by the Venerable One at deep mid-wicket.
A second wicket followed a few overs later, when Cran scurried from short mid-wicket to shortish mid-on, to catch the new batsman off Tom Halsey (8-0-25-1) who had replaced Rob Hayto (3-0-17-1) harshly removed by Cran because he had only taken one wicket in 3 overs. 67-2 off 17 overs.
During the drinks break, Cran no doubt again forcefully delivered his "must do better!" exhortation that had already been heard more than once during the first 20 overs.
Nevertheless another 12 overs were to be bowled and 47 runs added before the third wicket fell and the first of the required 3 bowling points notched up. The Venerable One safely catching a mishit at long-off off Stuey (5-0-25-1). 113-3 off 29 overs.
Having given Lids (6-0-25-0) a bowl without success, Cran turned to Rish's pace, which produced an immediate wicket in his first over, caught behind by Nick Bailey. 118-4
Still 3 wickets needed to get the required 2 bowling points.
One of these came in the 34th over, when Rish bowled the new batsman in his third over. 139-5.
And Rish repeated the trick, bowling the next batsman in his next over. 147-6.
Just 2 balls of the 40 overs remained when it happened. The batsmen foolishly turning for a second run, taking on Harry Arnold's arm at deep mid wicket. Big mistake.
Harry's throw was fast and flat into Nick Baileys gloves who smartly took off the bails, with the batsman out by yards.
Cue the the whoops of exultation, and a quick team huddle to savour the moment, before Rish (6-0-24-4) bowled the next man off the last ball to leave the innings score on 169-8. OP's opener Neil Brathwaite carried his bat for 65*.
The 2's trooped triumphantly off to applause from the little band of travelling supporters.
Rob Hayto opened the reply with Harry Page (12), who was caught at slip in the sixteenth over with the score on 78. Rish went out, and came back an over later, caught at slip for a duck.
Nick was the new batsman, but soon lost partner Rob Hayto, caught behind for a brilliantly destructive 77 off 67 (11x4 2x6).
101-3 off 19, 69 needed off 19.
Lids (2) went out and came back a couple of overs later. Cran joined Nick on 109-4. 61 required off 16.
Cran and Nick added 58 in in the 12 overs to take the team to the brink of victory, but Cran was caught trying to finish matters.
Fergs (0*) joined Nick, who hit the winning 4 two balls later. Nick ended up on 46* (off 51).
Job done. CHAMPIONS! ("Momentum Maintained").
Of course, Wanstead won again but Chelmsford remain 37 points clear.
In the last league game of the season, Chelmsford host Wanstead at Chelmer next week, in what is nevertheless likely to be the most closely contested match of the season.
Wouldn't it be great to finish in style and remain unbeaten and maybe 50 points clear?
Congratulations to Sterls (1,001 league runs) and the Firsts, who beat closest challengers, Wanstead by 2 runs with 2 balls remaining to confirm their Premiership in style.
1's and 2's - DOUBLE ESSEX PREMIER LEAGUE CHAMPIONS!
3rd XI vs Ilford (Home) – League.
Chelmsford 150 all out from 38.3 overs.
Ilford 153/3 from 28.4 overs.
Ilford won by 7 wickets.
- Andrew Rycroft – 64* (nine 4s).
- Ed Cole – 20 (two 4s).
- Miles Clark – 17 (three 4s).
- Rory Skepelhorn – 8 overs, 1 maiden, 35 runs and 1 wicket.
- Adam Derham – 7 overs, 1 maiden, 37 runs and 1 wicket.
4th XI vs Loughton (Away) – League.
Loughton 122 all out from 39.1 overs.
Chelmsford 210/6 from 40 overs
Chelmsford won by 88 runs.
- Jordan Campion – 63 runs.
- Nigel Guy – 59 runs.
- Mohammed Ahmed – 18 runs.
- Ben Lawrence – 7 overs, 4 maidens, 7 runs and 4 wickets.
- Neil Siriwardana – 7 overs, 2 maidens, 22 runs and 3 wickets.
- Steve Bond – 7.1 overs, 4 maidens, 12 runs and 2 wickets.
5th XI vs Leigh-on-Sea 3rd XI (Away) – League.
Leigh-on-Sea 177 all out from 38 overs.
Chelmsford 198/9 from 40 overs.
Chelmsford won by 21 runs.
A terrific performance from Anish Nikam with a maiden league fifty and four wickets was the key to an enjoyable win over Leigh's third team.
Suhail Shahid (38) with support from Aditya Kuzhupilly (22) got the innings off to a positive start before the innings faltered first against spin and then Humpage (2-17).
Nikam had settled in and shared good partnerships with Charlie Hagger and James Fergus. On a big and slow outfield their positive running increased the rate although it did cost Nikam his wicket, run out for an impressive 53.
The innings closed at 198, Elliott returning three for 34 but that looked a good score in the conditions.
With opening bowlers Tom Hutchinson and Anis Rahman removing the openers there was a good start in the field. The game looked to be on the shoulders of Hawthorn who started very well and then played sensibly.
Leigh captain Threadgold proved good support and the fourth wicket partnership flourished. Chelmsford's fielding wilted and the bowlers were finding it difficult in drizzly conditions as 54 runs came in 8 overs before Hagger gained the crucial wicket of Hawthorn (55).
The bowler causing most difficulties was Nikam and he was eventually rewarded with the wicket of Threadgold (49) and soon had a second wicket stumped by Andy Rodgers. Clarke was the dangerous player left and initially he seemed to do well reducing the requirement to 34 from 5. In a bizarre incident he appeared to take umbrage at being turned down for a single allowing himself to be run out.
The game ended in a rush 2 overs later with three wickets in 3 balls, Nikam (4-26) taking two sandwiching a run out by Alex Bailey. Tom Hutchinson holding a good catch to close out the game.
With one game left Chelmsford will finish 6th or 7th in the league, a decent return for the only fifth team in the league which includes 3 third teams.
6th XI vs Mathews CC (Home) – Friendly.
Chelmsford 190/9 dec from 39.1 overs.
Mathews 169/9 from 40 overs.
Chelmsford won by 21 runs.
- Tejas Ramnath – 60.
- Rupert Redman – 58.
- Priyantha Siriwardana – 17.
- Oakley Bromfield – 8 overs, 28 runs and 2 wickets.
- Freddie Ryan – 7 overs, 1 maiden, 30 runs and 2 wickets.
- Abraham Kurian – 5 overs, 17 runs and 1 wicket.
- Harvey Smith – 5 overs, 18 runs and 1 wicket.
- Tejas Ramnath – 2 overs, 12 runs and 1 wicket.