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Kent League Premier Division week 13
Kent League Premier Division week 13

Having seemingly had one hand on the Kent League Premier Division trophy, Minster were reminded that there can be many twists and turns in a season when they were defeated at home to Sandwich Town.

Opener Zac Fagg put the Minster bowlers to the sword after Sandwich were asked to bat first. He struck 102 from 73 deliveries, including three sixes and sixteen fours. David Grant scored 59, Kit Keey 47, Matthew Frewin 44, and Alex Smith 34 as the visitors racked up 314 for 9 in 50 overs.

Amongst the carnage, Kai Appleby claimed 3 for 29 off five overs. Ed Moore (44) and Joe Parry (40) set the base for Minster’s reply, but wickets fell regularly, and despite a hard hitting 45 not out by Chris Piesley, they were bowled out for 239. Harry Bee took 3 for 41 and Jan Gray 3 for 52.

Second placed Hayes took full advantage by winning at Tunbridge Wells. The hosts elected to bat first and put on 92 for the first wicket but once Chris Williams (63) and Christian Davis (31) were dismissed by Andrew Eddicott, who finished with 3 for 52, they were unable to build momentum and were bowled out for 183.

Gareth Severin led the response with 106, and despite a few blips from Hayes mid innings, Rory Low took command and all but saw them home by three wickets with a patient 37.

Further daylight between the top two and the rest resulted from third placed Blackheath’s defeat at Bexley. Having decided to bat first both Dipayan Paul and Ross Richardson were both dismissed for 69 as they were bowled out for 192. Overseas professional Ed Nuttall took his best figures in a Bexley shirt with 4 for 33 and Adam Ball claimed 3 for 45.

Aiden Griggs scored 52 off 53 deliveries to set Bexley on their way but it took the cool head of Ball, with 38 not out, to see his team home by three wickets with nearly ten overs to spare.

A second consecutive victory took Lordswood out of the bottom two and dragged hosts Bickley Park back into the dogfight. The visitors chose to bat first and accumulated 217 for 7 in their 50 overs. Joe Gordon scored his second century in two weeks, finishing on 102 not out, and Michael French scored 45.

That proved to be more than enough as Bickley were dismissed for 178. Gordon followed up his batting exploits with 3 for 27 after Touseeq Shah had knocked over three top order wickets on his way to 3 for 24. Krishna Padmanabhan, Daniel Magin and Seb Naylor all got into the forties, but none were able to go on for the big score required.

Luke Schlemmer’s hot streak for Sevenoaks Vine continued as they saw off bottom club Beckenham. He scored 111 for his third century in three weeks. Michael Cowdrey weighed in with 95 as they scored 285 for 6 having been invited to bat first. Junaid Nadir was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 53.

In the reply, James Fear scored 70, Harri Aravinthan 42, and Ross Piller 38, but Beckenham were bowled out for 204. Lorne Burns had the incredible figures of 6 for 31 off 6.2 overs.

Minster remain top, but just by one point from Hayes. At the bottom, Beckenham would probably need to win all five of their remaining games to avoid the drop, but the other relegation place is up for grabs with all but the top two being at risk should they have a bad run.

Picture supplied by Keith Gillard.