Leverstock Green 5th XI v St Albans Cricket Club 6XI on Sat 08 Jun 2024 at 1pm
St Albans Cricket Club Won by 8 wkts

Match report St Albans 6s headed into the match at Verulamium Park with a handful of concerns: Ieuan’s aches and pains following a week of work experience as a groundsman - including the preparation of today’s pitch – meant he was too sore to bowl (much); Jamie’s, now-healed, broken thumb meant he couldn’t bowl but was definitely okay to field close-in (!); the irregular shape of the boundary and the long nettles just beyond it meant we had a selection of replacement balls of varying ages to replace the inevitable lost ball(s); of the two pitches shown on the confusingly-annotated Verulamium pitch map, are we definitely on upper pitch 2? And now a new concern: are we going to have enough bowlers since we have two calling in crocked?!

It was a cloudy, humid day so fielding first was a must. When a youthful Lerverstock Green won the toss and put themselves in, skipper James was agog, and delighted. Batting wasn’t easy, the ball swung nicely and the oppo struggled somewhat. Bowling through his aches, Ieuan’s fortitude was rewarded with two wickets, the second being from a sharp catch, taken at head height at gulley by Jamie. A nightmare trip to A&E and apologies to Mr and Mrs Coffer fizzed through the mind but thankfully the catch was taken cleanly. James was bowling from the other end, getting good shape and took two wickets, both bowled. By the end of the seventh over the oppo were 15-4 but with last week’s huge tail wag by Batford 3s still fresh in the memory, the St Albans bowlers pressed on.

Suli replaced Ieuan and tempted the batsmen into a number of false shots. One of which being an attempted pull shot which flew over the ‘keeper and towards an onrushing skipper at fine leg. He not only managed to react too slowly to the potential catch but also misjudged the bounce to allow the ball to run through his legs and over the boundary for 4. Proper village.

The pair bowled well both taking two wickets each in their final overs - one of which was yet another super catch by Jamie at gulley; Suli finished with two wickets, James with four, the oppo at 35-8.

Kate and Niraj came into the attack with immediate effect. Niraj’s first wicket was a tremendous catch at midwicket by Maroof off a flat-batted swipe and for the second he bowled the oppo skipper through the gate. Leverstock Green finished on 47 all out.

It was a small target to chase but if the ball moved around for the oppo as much as it had for the St Albans bowlers, it wouldn’t be a straightforward one. And it proved thus as Fin was bowled in the first over, bringing Jack to the wicket. And this is when the nettles came into play. With the ball not even three overs old, Jack hit a glorious straight six over the bowlers’ head and into the stingers. No amount of trampling and bat scything could find the ball so the oppo were given a new cherry. This made little difference as Jamie stroked two text-book cover drives over the boundary line. His stay at the crease was ended in the fourth over, bowled for nine.

Maroof joined Jack and they worked well to chase the total down. Jack hit yet another ball beyond the boundary and into the stingers but thankfully it was located and the oppo didn’t get a new ball this time. A change of bowler made little difference as Jack continued to find the boundary with ease, while Maroof hit two identical pull shots through midwicket. The second of these great thwacks broke Maroof’s bat and a very tentative Jodi lent his bat to the cause hoping to receive it back undamaged.

Jack won the match with a driven four off the final ball of the ninth over. For those who like their Ts crossed and their lower-case Js dotted, both innings satisfyingly finished on the final ball of the last over. St Albans won by one run and the afternoon was still young. Considering only 25 overs had been bowled across both innings, we should have arranged a beer match.

Leverstock Green 5th XI Batting
Player name RunsMB4s6sSR
3nb 12w 3lb 
for 10 wickets
47 (16.0 overs)
Joe Morgan b  Chakma-Smith 0
M. Hannibal ct  Coffer b Chakma-Smith 5
L. Morrison b  Witty 0
A. Lawley b  Nisar 11
S. Cruickshanks ct  Coffer b Witty 0
J. Mullen b  Witty 2
Jake Morgan b  Witty 0
A. Mullen Not Out  2
J. b  Nisar 0
W. Terry ct  Maroof b Niraj 9
G. Coulshed b  Niraj 0

St Albans Cricket Club 6XI Bowling

Player NameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
James Witty7.021243.001.71
Ieuan Chakma-Smith3.00924.503.00
Sulaiman Nisar4.001427.003.50
Kate Pankhurst1.00600.006.00
Niraj Aswani1.00623.006.00

St Albans Cricket Club 6XI Batting
Player Name RMB4s6sSRCatchesStumpingsRun outs
1nb 2w  
for 2 wickets
Fin McNab b  G. Coulshed 1
Jamie Coffer b  Jake Morgan 9 2 2
Jack Benjamin Not Out  25 3 1
nasibullah Maroofkhel Not Out  10 2
Jodi Odgers  
Kate Pankhurst  
Ieuan Chakma-Smith  
Ben Hingston  
Niraj Aswani  
Sulaiman Nisar  
James Witty  

Leverstock Green 5th XI Bowling

Player nameOversMaidensRunsWicketsAverageEconomy
G. Coulshed3.0012112.004.00
Jake Morgan3.00900.003.00