Bottom side Chorleywood dash Reed’s slim promotion hopes

Jack Tidey Bowls for Reed

Jack Tidey Bowls for Reed - Credit: Archant

Reed’s faint hopes of promotion to Saracens Herts League Premier Division were extinguished with a narrow home defeat to the league’s bottom club on Saturday.

The hosts entered the match having won four of their past five league matches but lost a crucial toss, meaning they were held in the searing heat.

Although Toby Fynn (1-39) took an early wicket, Chorleywood got off to a reasonable start on what looked a decent batting wicket as they reached 55-1 off 14 overs.

However, the reliable Jack Tidey (3-33) then struck three times in quick succession to reduce the visitors to 71-4. Phil Lill (4-25) then entered the fray and continued his fine form with the ball, putting Reed well on top.

He helped reduce their opponents to 125-9, and was assisted by a good spell from Tom Greaves (1-40).

Although the last wicket added 32, Reece Fitzgerald (1-1) ended Chorleywood’s innings on 157 all out. On a decent track the total looked well within Reed’s reach.

The home side got off to an unusually rocky start though as James Heslam went for just five and then William Heslam (14) and Chris Jackson (0) departed, leaving Reed 39-3 off 15 overs.

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Chorleywood’s bowling had been highly competitive all season and they continued to bowl tightly to leave Reed in trouble.

They did begin to dig in and slowly turn the tide as Greaves (40) and Stuart Smith (27) took the score along to 86-3 off 28 overs.

Another flurry of wickets then brought Chorleywood back into the game, but the free-scoring pair of Sean Tidey (25) and Smith looked like they were going to guide Reed to victory as they got the home side to 122-5 off 34 overs.

Sadly, that was not to be the case as the game then turned again, this time in the visitors’ favour.

Tidey and then Smith went, the latter unfortunately LBW, and subsequently Reed collapsed to 138 all out despite having 11 overs to spare.

With two games to go Reed are out of the race for second place but can still secure a good final league position to cap a mixed season.

A win at fifth-placed Langleybury this weekend would give Reed an outside chance of catching Hoddesdon, who are currently third.