Honours shared at The Ridge

By - Monday 24th June, 2013

Batting ruled the day at The Ridge on Saturday afternoon after promotion-chasing Esher secured a winning draw against Purley

ESHER  263-4 dec. (Hopkinson 129)

PURLEY  205-5 (Windley 56)

Winning Draw to Esher

Razi Khan keeping the bowling tight for Purley

Mark Hopkinson top scored with an outstanding 129 as Esher, batting first, declared on 263-4. Purley batted confidently to finish on 205-5 as the game ended in a draw.

Following some early morning rain, Purley took the decision after winning the toss to bowl first, anticipating that the pitch would flatten out and be easier to bat on as the day progressed. The reality was that this was an excellent pitch to bat on with a lightning quick outfield, and Esher took full advantage of this as Hopkinson and Ahmed got the visitors off to an excellent start.

They passed fifty without much concern as they pounced on anything loose. Hopkinson then survived a close lbw shout off Andy Macdonald before going on to display some real power and impressive hitting. Razi Khan and Macdonald had bowled tightly to restrict the opening pair but, following some early caution, they decided to take the spinners on. Ahmed (43) then swept Khan straight to Thishan Wanigaratne as Esher lost their first wicket with the score on 116.

Hopkinson, following the Ahmed dismissal, went on the attack and hit some huge sixes off the spinners. He passed 100 with plenty of time to go and he was finally dismissed, caught and bowled, by the returning Wanigaratne for a brilliant 129. Wanigaratne also removed Ed Lowe as the Pumas tried to limit the scoring. John Mason and Kurham Ishad batted well as Esher declared on 263-4.

Esher’s Mark Hopkinson on his way to 129

Irshad then opened the bowling, with Lowe, and bowled with real hostility and pace to unsettle the Puma openers Stuart Glassington and Shane Patel. Despite being hit for a couple of boundaries, Irshad bowled with real menace and removed Glassington, Patel and in-form Savion Lara to leave the Pumas reeling at 59-3. Adam Windley and James Scott looked to restore some solidity to the innings but when Scott was run out for just 11 the home side looked in trouble.

But Windley and Nathan Harris batted superbly to nullify the Esher attack and steer Purley away from defeat. Windley was dismissed for 56 but Harris batted on and was supported by an tremendous cameo from Nav Chaudhry as Purley finished on 205-5. Harris finished on 43 not out and Chaudhry 45 from just 24 balls. Irshad was the pick of the bowlers with 3-56. Both sides will take plenty of positives out an absorbing encounter.

The Pumas face local rivals Trinity Mid-Whitgiftians next Saturday in what looks like being a truly fascinating game.

Purley Cricket Club

Purley Cricket Club

Purley Cricket Club boast 3 Saturday sides playing in the Surrey Championship, 4 Sunday sides, a colts section which is the envy of the county and an innovative academy. Our ground boasts excellent facilities for playing and socialising. They have recently welcomed Redoubtables WCC, the second oldest women's cricket club in the world, to join with the ladies section as Purley Redoubtables. If you fancy a game of cricket, get in touch with Purley CC as they are looking for players of all standards.

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