Bowlers do damage as Reed win to close gap at the top

Ed Wharton at the crease. Picture: Danny Loo

Ed Wharton at the crease. Picture: Danny Loo - Credit: Archant

Reed cruised to a seven-wicket win over Ampthill Town, thanks to a brilliant performance from their bowling attack, to keep pace at the top of the Herts Cricket Championship.

The home side lost five batsman for ducks as the Reed attack took their order apart in 46 overs, with Ampthill finishing 91 all out.

It took the visitors just 18 overs to reach their target, with Edward Wharton hitting 32 to top score.

Ampthill won the toss and decided to bat first, but it was a decision which turned out to be a poor one.

Reed made the perfect start by taking an early wicket when Wharton bowled Ajay Singh Momi for eight.

The bowler then go his second wicket as he trapped the host's other opener, Tom Degnan, LBW for three.

Wharton got his third wicket when he bowled Lee Archer for a duck, before Liam Everitt was run out for naught, leaving Ampthill struggling on 20-4.

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James Gage and S. Ali Khan also went for ducks as Jack Tidey removed both, with Will Glenister going next for 19, caught off the bowling of Tom Greaves.

Zachary McGuigan then got his wicket, bowling Jack Fuller for 19, leaving the home side 47-8.

Will Sneath put up a fight to push the score to 91 all out, as he hit 28 to top score.

Wharton was the pick of the bowlers for Reed, recording figures of 3-20, while Tidey also impressed with 2-15.

In reply, the away side put on 43 for the first wicket, with Wharton hitting 32 from just 17 balls before being caught by Archer off the bowling of Sneath.

Robert Lankester was out next when he was trapped LBW by Devon Brooke for 22, but at 71-2, Reed had all but secured victory.

They did lose another wicket though when McGuigan was caught for 11, but it was merely prolonging the inevitable.

James Heslam hit three and Matthew Sampson hit 20 to get them over the line for a full 30-point win.

Everitt recorded best bowling figures of 1-6 for Ampthill, with Brooke and Sneath also picking up a wicket each.

Reed keep pace at the top of the Championship after leaders Shenley Village beat third-placed Hoddesdon by 96 runs.

Reed will have the chance to put further distance between themselves and Hoddesdon, when the two sides face off next weekend.

They will also be hoping that second-bottom Old Owens can pull off a shock win when they face Shenley in the Championship next Saturday.