There was plenty of differing weather for clubs to face in the Herts Cricket League this week - and it brought many differing results.

The rain of the morning gave way to sunny and warm conditions and made the toss important.

Hitchin bounded to the top of Division One with a five-wicket win over Reed at Lucas Lane.

They lost the toss and were asked to bowl and after an early breakthrough for Sam Rippington, again bowling with pace and accuracy, Hitchin struggled to make further inroads.

At drinks on 25 overs, Reed were 111-1 and looking well set.

However, the return to the attacking Rippington and the addition of Shaftab Khalid after the break precipitated a swift batting collapse.

Rippington took the crucial wickets of Robert Lankester for 44 and Will Heslam for 58 and the rest soon followed, Reed all out for 146.

Rippington was the pick of the bowlers with 3-19.

And while Reed made some breakthroughs in reply, another fine half-century by Toqeer Hussain, his 70 going with two wickets, saw Hitchin home in the 27th over.

The seconds lost away to Sandridge by seven wickets having made only 133, chosing to bat first after winning the toss.

Simon Baston's 66 offered the only real resistance and Sandridge eased past that in the 23rd over.

The losses kept coming too.

The thirds were beaten at home to Wheathampstead despite batting well, Chris Maylin and Ben Hammond both getting 60s.

The visitors got past their total of 173 in the 36th over, four wickets down.

Potton Town beat Hitchin fourths by 30 runs.

Hitchin had put the home side in and saw them get to 239-4.

Valiant efforts of 63 for Chris White, 44 for Stuart Gwinnett and 39 for Chris Gwinnett were not enough in reply and they finished on 209.

The fifths and sixths lost too, beaten by Bengeo and Redbourn respectively.

Harry Seale got four wickets and William Michie three, the latter also scoring 45 in reply, the same total as Stuart Gadsden.

Cameron Carr managed 32 for the fifths as well.

Preston lost the toss too against Championship leaders Flitwick and were asked to bat first, eventually going on to lose by six wickets.

They did construct a decent innings, getting to 221 all out in the 56th over with George Biggs (50) and Justin Powick (56) making solid starts.

It was the innings of George Thurstance that once again set Flitwick on their way to victory, making a classy 105 before being caught off the bowling of Powick.

It was a bad day all round for Preston as their other teams lost too.

The seconds came unstuck against Harpenden, going down by four wickets in Division Four B.

They could only get to 146 all out in the 36th over, Harpenden's youthful Charlie Twelftree bowling superbly for 6-22.

Harpenden then batted doggedly against some tight bowling but punished the bad balls and reached 149-6 in the 38th over. 

The thirds lost by 55 runs to Boxmoor in Division Eight West.

Boxmoor batted first and got to 217-7 in their 40 overs and while Preston batted out their innings, they ended on 162-8.

The fourths also fell short against Knebworth Park thirds.

Taking first knock, Preston were all out for 96 and in reply Knebworth made 99-6 in the 21st over.

Preston did win on Sunday though in the Beds League, beating visitors Harrold by 143 runs.

Skipper Ed Wharton making a quickfire 55, supported by 56 from Jacob Williamson, to take the Preston total to 267-9 off their 40 overs.

In reply Harrold fell for 124 with both Oliver Gallimore and Arundeep Natt taking four wickets each.

Letchworth grabbed a draw against Hemel Hempstead.

The hosts had made 294-6 batting first, Zac Hayes getting 3-81 for Letchworth, but it was the dogged innings of Nathan Sprittles that got them the points.

He made 15 in 56 balls to leave them on 163-4 at the close.

Stevenage got their second win of the season in Division Two A, beating Eversholt by six wickets at home.

Anjani Singh got 3-21 and Lee Cope 3-26 as the visitors were all out for 186 and then solid batting all round took the home side to victory in the 42nd over.

Conor Crosland top scored with 59, Michael Tyler managed 38 while Singh finished on 42 not out.

Matt Hutchinson of Knebworth Park Cricket Club. Picture: VIKKI LINCEMatt Hutchinson of Knebworth Park Cricket Club. Picture: VIKKI LINCE (Image: Vikki Lince)

Liam Mitchell scored 59 for Knebworth Park in Division Two B but they lost by seven wickets to Bishop's Stortford.

Archie Stephens (47*) and Matt Hutchinson (27*) pushed the Park total up to 231-7 in their 50 overs but Stortford stormed past that with nine overs to spare.

Undisciplined batting and bowling sent Ickleford to a six-run defeat at home to Potton Town in Division Three A.

They bowled first but were unable to shift opener Sean Stevens, who punished too many bad balls on his way to 55.

The introduction of Sam Draper (4-30) and Sadat Sheraz (2-10) had an impact for Ickleford and sent Potton from 140-4 to 170 all out.

At that point it seemed Ickleford had got out of jail and they chipped away in the reply, reaching 90-1 to seemingly put both hands on a success.

But the loss of Eswar Krishnamurthy for 40 triggered a horrible middle order collapse with a series of soft dismissals.

And despite spirited resistance from Draper (29) and Tom Brown (18*), Ickleford were all out six runs short.

The seconds had a convincing win against Aldenham despite having the worst of the conditions.

Put in on a wet wicket, Ickleford were soon in trouble at 5-2, but the innings was shored up with good contributions from Russell Dermont (25), Jak Phillip (22) and Richard Brown (24).

A rapid partnership of 60 in just six overs between Mark Schumann and Ash Hussain who both ended up making 34 took the score to an impressive 191 in what had become a rain-shortened 38-over match.

Aldenham never threatened the victory target taking 35 overs to make just 104.

Scott Crouch took 3-20, Brown 2-15 and Ash Hussain 2-18.

Ickleford's thirds took on Stevenage fifths but lost by five wickets.

There was an excellent 33 from Jayden Lidder for Ickleford, and James Kench and Scott Dalrymple put on 21 for the final wicket, but wickets kept tumbling as Ickleford closed on 108. 

The second half of the game started well for Ickleford restricting the hosts to 8-3 with two wickets for Richard Peareth including one extremely brave catch by Leo Chan who got injured in the process.

He battled on but the game slipped away from Ickleford until a late burst of pace from Jake Ellis-Holmes gave a glimmer of hope to the visitors as he took two quick wickets. 

The Sunday team played Monken Nomads and won by four wickets.

Junior players Noah Giggle (3-26) and Tyler Temple (2-13) left the Nomads on 155


Ickleford started their chase badly losing two wickets for no runs but 58 not out from Luke Marsden pushed the game decisively to Ickleford.

Dave Baker made 39, and even though three wickets were lost in one over, skipper Charlie Jupp joined Marsden, hitting 39 not out as Ickleford took the win.