We're swinging in the rain! Hitchin grab joyous win after topsy-turvy contest

PUBLISHED: 07:12 14 June 2019

Hitchin skipper Shaftab Khalid bagged three wickets in the win over Kings Langley. Picture: DANNY LOO

Hitchin skipper Shaftab Khalid bagged three wickets in the win over Kings Langley. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

Hitchin somehow grabbed a victory against Kings Langley in a Herts Cricket League Division One game that had more swings than a childrens' playground.

Given the morning's rain it was only thanks to a huge mopping up effort from those at the ground that the game took place at all.

But after slumping to 6-3 after being asked to bat first, there was plenty asking the question whether the effort had been worth it.

Ben Joyce had been the home team's nemesis in that spell but he was unable to shift opener Sanjay Chandarana and alongside Kashif Nizami, the pair managed to calm things down.

They added 50 more runs before Nizami mistimed a drive to leave Hitchin still in bother.

Chandarana, however, was still there but although he made another excellent 50, his dismissal left Hitchin on 100-8.

Crucially though there was a degree of late-order resistance. Musa Ilyas, Rishi Chandarana and Haseeb Bawja all made useful contributions to drag the score up to 133, which still looked below par.

Captain Shaftab Khalid clean bowled the Langley opener in the first over to give Hitchin hope although despite bowling really well and restricting the visitors progressed reasonably comfortably to 30-1.

The introduction of Nizami though changed the game as he took two quick wickets to finish on 2-13 and with Saed Waqas and Rishi Chandarana bowling with hostility, Kings Langley soon slumped to 50-6.

The game swung again as they soon needed 34 from nine overs but U17 Ilyas produced an amazing spell on his bowling debut, immediately bowling Andrew Burnell and Christian James before picking up another wicket to finish on 3-19.

That left 12 to win from the final two overs and one wicket left and with they got that to six before Khalid's final ball struck him plumb in line with the stumps to spark the celebrations.

Hitchin seconds and fourths fell foul of the weather but the thirds remain top of the league with a six-run victory against Hemel Hempstead.

Ben Hankin hit 42 not out and followed it up with two wickets although Connor Rathbone was the chief destroyer with an excellent 4-24.

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