St Albans 3 v Pinner Cricket Club Saturday 1st XI on Sat 02 Jul 2022 at 1300
Pinner Cricket Club Won by 4 wickets (reduced target)

Match report Partnership of 130 for 1st wicket between Dhawan & Baker.
Rain stopped play 6:50pm - 6:58pm, 2 overs lost. Target reduced to 170 off 38 overs.

Match report - St Albans IIIs vs. Pinner 1s, at Verulam School Grounds, St Albans
The Pinner 1s played away from home at St Albans’ who we knew will be a dangerous side, given that they’d already beaten a strong Aldenham team a few weeks ago. With one of the top two sure to drop points as they played each other on the same day, this was our opportunity to move up to second place in the table with a win.
We welcome back Daniel Langan who, trying to outdo Rohitesh Dhawan's skippering from last week, spent the morning scouring Tesco for performance enhancing sweets. In addition to the still absconding Jack Tucker, we were without Kunal "kilogram" Gandhi. After losing the toss and being asked to bowl, I was busy getting my keeping gear on when I was reminded I was playing as opening bowler alongside spearhead, Felix "I want to get outta here ASAP" Hoh . Tremendous. Felix started with a bang and we were convinced we had their opener Nisar trapped in front twice in the first over, but the decisions didn’t go our way. Salman was pulled up by the umpire for "fake fielding". The tone for the day was set. I started a little less accurately and Murray slapped a couple of boundaries at the other end. Soon enough though, there was good rhythm in the bowling and the pressure was on at both ends. Felix broke through, bowling Murray through the gate. Their number 3, Law, then hit an astonishingly good cover drive off my bowling straight into wicket-keeper Manish Babbar’s hands but it was deemed to have only hit thin air. Tensions mounted. Felix (8-3-18-2) ensured Law didn’t stick around, inducing an edge in the very next over. This time the nick was even more obvious and could not be given not out. 22-2. Ralfe and Nisar played watchfully until Felix and I completed our spells. 2019 Love Island reject, Nicholas Lawrence and 2025 Love Island hopeful, Salman Moeeniddin took over, but Nick struggled to find his mojo. Sal (8-1-24-1) however, carrying on from last week, was in his element making the batters dance to his tune. He had Ralfe, tired of listening to James "bus wanker" Baker, bowled after going for a wild swipe. Dan (8-0-22-1) soon had a wicket, Lawrence adjudged LBW after missing a straight full toss. 66-4. This brought Murphy to the crease to join Nisar, who was keeping the ship steady with sensible batting. This phase of play was a struggle for both sides. St Albans struggled to accelerate and Pinner struggled to find a breakthrough with Dan, John “bigger pecs than Nick” Hoh and Kavit all bowling pretty well. The Lambs had to wait until the 32nd over for Kavit "accused of mild racism this week and therefore definitely not as nice a human being as Manish Babbar" Dixit to get Nisar out caught behind for a good 49. Button joined Murphy and the two set about accelerating the scoring, helped also by some shoddy fielding. I (8-0-40-1) was able to eke out one more wicket but St Albans had the better of the second 20 overs, getting to 178-6. We had probably conceded 30 runs too many but still felt confident of getting them.
The rain clouds kept threatening and the plan for our batters was to stay ahead of the required rate of 4.5 runs an over. The opening pair of James "clueless about Google Maps" Baker and Rohitesh "first CEO to step foot into a WH Smith" Dhawan (so many CEO firsts), started off in authoritative fashion, punishing anything that was even marginally loose. While I'd never say this to his face, James is probably the batsman at this club who makes me feel very assured about proceedings when he is at the crease. The 50 partnership came up in the 9th over and from there the pair moved from strength to strength. The opposition skipper shuffled the bowling around but to no avail. By the time drinks were taken, James had brought up his 50 and Pinner were 102-0, well ahead of the asking rate. The scoring rate was accelerated further after the break until Ro (46) and James (77) were dismissed in quick succession and the score 133-2. This seemed to send a few jitters into the Pinner batting as Manish (3), Raj (5) and I (8 ) were dismissed cheaply, with 28 runs still to get. Luckily for us, a few of the opposition players were too busy preparing and orchestrating their next "clever" sledge, that they forgot their primary duty of catching the spherical red object. Sal, beneficiary of one of these chances, played solidly and flayed the odd ball to the fence to inch us close to the target, when the skies opened up. After a brief interruption, when the skippers had a gentleman's argument about whether play should continue and what the revised target should be (170), Sal together with Kavit went about knocking off the remaining runs. When scores were level, Kavit decided to play a premeditated scoop to be LBW and bowled off the same ball. Nick Lawrence walked in and smashed the leather off the ball after a few dots to see us home by 4 wickets and send Sal wheeling away in celebration.
This was a top performance against a good side and keeps us well in the hunt for promotion as we go into the second half of the season.
Two observations from today.
Banter, needle or whatever you want to call it, is fine, but cricket should be the primary focus. Play the f*****g game first.
Jasprit Bumrah is skipper and a number 11. He has just surged well ahead of Daniel Langan in the batting department, as proven by events in Birmingham. Daniel and his good mate, Virat can fight it out for second best.
Dick of the day: Kavit Dixit for arriving even later than Sal, who at least had the excuse of watching a recording of Love Island in preparation for his 2025 audition.
Player(s) of the match: James Baker could have won this himself for a brilliant 77, but I'd like to hand it to both him and Rohitesh Dhawan for putting us on top with a 130 run opening stand.

St Albans 3 Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
4nb 5w 12b 9lb 
for 6 wickets
178 (40.0 overs)
Navman Nisar ct  Babbar b. Dixit 49 6
Stuart Murray b  Hoh 8 2
Rory Law ct  Babbar b. Hoh 0
Nicholas Ralfe b  Moeenidden 14 3
James Lawrence lbw  Langan 5
Adam Murphy Not Out  35 2
Alfie Button ct  Babbar b. Ramachandran 23 3
Lucas Berry Not Out  15 1
Phil Caley  
Ben Glazier  
Andrew Walker  

Pinner Cricket Club Saturday 1st XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Felix Hoh8.031829.002.25
Hari Ramachandran8.0040140.005.00
Nick Lawrence2.001400.007.00
Sal Moeeniddin8.0124124.003.00
Daniel Langan8.0022122.002.75
John Hoh3.002200.007.33
Kavit Dixit3.0018118.006.00

Pinner Cricket Club Saturday 1st XI Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
5nb 4w 6b  
for 6 wickets
Rohitesh Dhawan ct  Sub b. Button 46 92 59 5 77.97
James Baker ct  Glazier b. Button 77 100 90 12 1 85.56
Hari Ramachandran ct  Lawrence b. Walker 8 25 21 1 38.10
Raj Vernekar lbw  Walker 5 3 6 83.33
Manish Babbar ct  & b. Walker 3 6 7 42.86 3
Sal Moeeniddin Not Out  13 27 20 3 65.00
Kavit Dixit b  Berry 4 20 13 30.77
Nick Lawrence Not Out  4 2 2 1 200
John Hoh  
Felix Hoh  
Daniel Langan  

St Albans 3 Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
Lucas Berry6.4036136.005.40
Alfie Button8.0033216.504.13
Adam Murphy7.003700.005.29
Andrew Walker8.011936.332.37
Ben Glazier4.002200.005.50
Nicholas Ralfe3.002000.006.67