Preston safe but win puts Hitchin on the brink of relegation

Preston Cricket Club's first team after beating Hitchin.

Preston Cricket Club's first team after beating Hitchin. - Credit: PRESTON CRICKET CLUB

Preston secured their Herts Cricket League Championship status for another season with victory over Hitchin - the result hammering another nail in the Lucas Lane club's coffin.

They won by six wickets at their own Recreation Ground to move 35 points above Hitchin with just one game to go.

It leaves Hitchin 22 points from safety and all but down, with even victory over champions Old Owens on Saturday possibly not good enough.

Preston put Hitchin in after winning the toss and Luke Day and Chris Maylan both batted sensibly reaching 44-0 after 10 overs.

The game would change quickly with the introduction of Max Anderson (2-24) and Nivin Sathyajith (3-36), the latter producing a game changing spell removing danger men Shaftab Kahlid and Ajay Momi in quick succession.

And when Anderson removed Luke Day (45) Hitchin found themselves in trouble at 82-4.

Peter Murrell and Ed Wharton (4-23) entered the attack, bowling beautifully giving Hitchin no let up.

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Tom Dryden batted well for his 35* but Hitchin were eventually bowled out for a below par 168.

Preston opened with Phil Simpson and Wharton where both players looked to capitalise on the power play and they finished the 10 overs on 63-0 and firmly in the driving seat.

Wharton would go on to record 66 off 44 balls leaving Preston with just 68 to win from 31 overs.

Simpson (51) eventually saw Preston home in comfortable fashion inside 30 overs.

Ickleford lost to a strong Stevenage side in Division Two A.

Put into bat, they were soon in trouble, losing two wickets before a run was on the board, and although Sam Guile batted skilfully and patiently for his 34 and Luke Marsden made a solid 25, they were dismissed for a well under par 104.

Stevenage raced to 71-0 before a flurry of wickets for Michael Day gave Ickleford a glimmer of hope.

He took 4-8 from six overs while Luke Dodd also grabbed a wicket before Stevenage won by five wickets.

Mike Philpotts (3-12) and Camron McKay (3-22) were the pick of the Stevenage bowlers while David Carr top scored with 48.

Elsewhere, already promoted Knebworth Park notched up their 13th win of the Division Three A season in their final home game.

It was probably the easiest too as they demolished Totteridge Millhillians seconds by nine wickets.

The visitors were bowled out for 101 in 30 overs with Kobie Richmond and Amelia Kemp both returning figures of 2-16.

And the Park batsmen made short work of the target scoring at seven an over with Louis Champion (40), Josh Roseberry (34*) and Archie Stephens (29*) completing the job inside 15 overs.

Letchworth remain in the relegation places of Division One but gave themselves hope after a five-wicket win at home to Ampthill Town.

They held the visitors to 201-6 after their 50 overs, Joe Davidson and Tom Kilby taking two wickets each, before Christy O'Brien's 60 and David Albon's 63 not out, hit from just 44 balls, saw them to victory in 37 overs.