North London beat South Hampstead to boost promotion bid
- Credit: Archant
Jack Atchinson’s first half-century of the season dug North London out of a hole as they saw off South Hampstead to rekindle their Middlesex County League Division Three promotion challenge.
The visitors were in deep trouble at 97-7 after being put in to bat at Milverton Road, but Atchinson’s belligerent innings of 68 hauled them to a respectable total of 189.
That proved to be sufficient as NL edged a close game against South Hampstead for the second time this season, with Atchinson’s successor as captain, Sam Bardon, taking 3-26 to wrap up a 22-run victory.
The result lifted North London above their hosts into fifth place, just 12 points outside the top two – with all their remaining games coming against the bottom three sides.
NL began their innings solidly enough, despite losing Hussain Shabbir (9) to Mohamad Choudry, as Milo Jennings (23) and Bardon (11) guided them to 46-1.
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However, Bardon and Jennings fell victim to Choudry (3-12) in quick succession and that precipitated a middle-order collapse, with Felix Walker (3-23) removing Jack Godfrey-Wood (6) and Will Lake (11).
When Jordan Gregory was run out for 18 and Avnish Patel bowled Ralph Pedersen for a single, North London seemed to be staring down the barrel – but Atchinson, with the help of the tail, turned their fortunes around.
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James Battcock (10) and Tom Wakeford (4) helped Atchinson to launch the recovery and, although both were eventually dismissed by Avnish Patel (3-34), last man James Fell (15) hung around a bit longer.
Fell added a priceless 60 for the last wicket with Atchinson, whose 62-ball knock included seven fours and two sixes before Walker captured his wicket to end the innings in the 45th over.
SH made a dreadful start to their reply, losing skipper Leroy Shepherd (4) to Tom Wakeford (2-28), who also removed Walker (9), while Battcock (1-31) had Zia Sialvi caught behind for a single.
That left them perilously placed at 17-3, but Choudry (34) and Daniel Grabinar (31) rebuilt with a partnership of 58, broken when Pedersen snaffled an edge off the bowling of Gregory (2-23) to remove the latter.
Pedersen picked up another two dismissals, stumping Tim Marcon (11) and James Williams (21) as South Hampstead slid to 108-6, but a breezy knock of 30 from Nish Patel kept them in contention.
It was left to Bardon – a former SH player – to seal his side’s success by removing Patel, as well as Avnish Patel (1) and Rizwan Mohammed (11), and ensure the home side were bowled out for 167 in the 43rd over.