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A perfect first league weekend

Saad Rehman hit the final ball for four to give the 1s victory on Saturday and complete a perfect four from four for The Trees to begin the MCCL season.

After the 2s, 3s, and 4s wrapped up wins earlier in the afternoon, the 1s completed the set with a nail-biting victory over Indian Gymkhana at the Brentham Club.

Prav Jadhav's side restricted the visitors to 211 off their 45 overs at Meadvale Road; Atif Shah (3-24) the pick of the bowlers as no Indian Gymkhana batter passed 50. In reply, Thirath Goane (65) continued his fine start to the season by top scoring. However, when he was the fourth man out with Brentham still 75 short it seemed like the points would be heading back to Thornbury Avenue.

This Brentham side bats deep though. Prav (38) and Algie Corbin (28) shared 38 for the fifth wicket before Saad (25 off 22) arrived at the crease as The Trees needed 38 to win off 44 balls. That equation was reduced to eight off nine balls before Algie was run out in the penultimate over. Zaraq Nazir fell shortly after as Brentham now needed four off three. A two and a one from the bat of Usman Maqbool brought Saad onto strike for the last ball which he steered through the gully to complete a remarkable victory.

The 2s victory over the same opponents was an all-together more straightforward affair with Brentham's total of 211 never looking in danger. After losing Harpeet Singh (2) early, Abbas Ilyas (58) and Jaz Rehal (39) put on 113 for the second-wicket. Both departed within four balls of each other but further contributions from Tomek Tsang (25), Jack Solomon (19), and Daniel Taylor (16) took Brentham past 200.

In reply, Matt Bunker Junior (3-23) and Jack Solomon (1-8 off 7) ripped the heart out of Indian Gymkhana's top order. Their top three were all removed without scoring as they were reduced to 1-3 and then 14-4. Only three batters reached double-figures with Harry Marston (3-19) running through the middle-order to complete a 67 run victory.

As the saying goes, a quick game is a good game and that was certainly the case for the 3s (main picture) with 278 runs and 20 wickets crammed into just 51.4 overs against SKLP CC. Batting first, Brentham hit 211 (a popular score this weekend) off just 32.2 overs. Jaidev Pindoria (62) (video below going past 50), Unmesh Wagh (40), and Derrick Roper (51) were the mainstays of an innings that fell apart somewhat from 200-5 to 211 all-out.

Any disappointment at runs left out there was quickly put behind Brentham as SKLP had no answer for Ayaz Khan (6-25). Moving the ball from a full length, there were six catches behind the wicket as only one batter got into double figures. Pratyesh Desai (2-2), Matt Plews (1-16), and Jaidev Pindoria (1-19) completed the formalities as SKLP were skittled for 67 in under 20 overs.

The 4s win was a fine team performance to chase down 183 with ten balls to spare. Matt Bunker Senior (3-36), Mohsin Hassan (2-50), Richard Taper (1-11) and Bhavin Raniga (1-27) restricted Harrow St Mary's to 183/7 off their 45 overs.

As he had last week against Eastcote, Abdul Shukkoor (56) anchored the reply. No other batter passed 20 but contributions from Haroun Islam (17), Azzy Butt (19), Vinay Khetia (14), and Mohsin Hassan (13), as well as 47 extras, took Brentham to the cusp of victory. Just like the opening Sunday of the season, it came down to Richard Taper (below) to strike the winning runs through the off-side.

Sunday's action saw a big win for the Club XI against Nepotists, The Trees total of 260-7 off 40 was built around 79 from Dan Taylor and Tomek Tsang's 60. In reply, Aadil Khan took four with Ciaran Brett (2), Asad Choudhury (2), Badar Nadeem (1), and Matt Plews (1) also in the wickets column as Nepotists were dismissed for a shade over 100.

Meanwhile at Acton CC, dropped catches cost the other Club XI as they were beaten by Acton by 6 wickets. Mohsin Hassan (60), Jamshed Ahmed (63), and Majid Butt (45) provided the backbone of Brentham's 267 in 45 overs. However, 122 from Huzaifa Yousafzai and an unbeaten 59 from Divyanshu Bhartiya got Acton home with five balls to spare.

Next weekend's League action sees:

1s vs Eastcote (A)

2s vs Barnes (H)

3s vs Shepherd's Bush (A)

4s vs Actonians (H)

On Sunday, there is then a home Middlesex Cup tie against Ealing Trailfinders at Brentham Club.


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