A memorable and historic weekend as Reed clinch promotion and National Village Cup

Skipper Tom Greaves was the match winner as Reed defeated Houghton Main in the final of the National

Skipper Tom Greaves was the match winner as Reed defeated Houghton Main in the final of the National Village Cup at Lords. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO

It’s not often that one weekend warrants such a big mention in a club’s history books but that is exactly what has just happened to Reed.

Reed's Zac McGuigan. Picture: DANNY LOO

Reed's Zac McGuigan. Picture: DANNY LOO - Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO

The village cricket club began on Saturday by reaching the Herts Cricket League Premier Division for the first time in their history thanks to a three-wicket win over Luton Town & Indians at The Green.

And if that wasn't enough they then travelled to Lords on the following day where they claimed a third victory in the National Village Cup.

Reed, just south of Royston, had a population of just 310 at the last census in 2011 but the cricket club lies at the heart of village life.

And plenty made their way down Blacksmith's Lane for the Championship promotion play-off against Luton, the side who finished ninth in this year's Premier Division.

Once again Reed's bowlers did not let them down.

Jack Tidey, bowling his 10 overs straight through, took out two batsmen in economical fashion to finish on 2-25.

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Tom Greaves (1-28) and Ed Wharton (2-29) then followed suit to leave Luton struggling on 89-5 and with only 20 overs to play.

And although they battled hard, Sean Tidey gladly mopped up the tail, leaving him with figures of 4-34 as the Bedfordshire visitors were all out for 157.

This seemed 50 runs short but in similar fashion Reed also lost five wickets in relatively short order, scoring just 58 runs in 12 overs.

Only Zac McGuigan (28) survived the onslaught partnering Matt Sampson before he was bowled by Fayaz Homyoon.

Greaves (23) helped Sampson in what looked to be a match-winning stand of 46 until he was stumped charging Homyoon with 15 required.

But as the spectators held their breath Sean Tidey smashed Sajjad Homyoon for a four and a six to take Reed home.

Sampson was the star though, getting to 46 not out with five boundaries and a six.

Celebrations needed to be curtailed somewhat ahead of the trip to cricket HQ and the clash with Houghton Main of Yorkshire.

But they needn't have worried as 67 not out from Greaves ensured Reed won comfortably by seven wickets.

In doing so they join Troon and St Fagan's in lifting the Village Cup three times, having done so previously in 2012 and 2017.

Only Woodhouse Grange with four titles have won it more than the Hertfordshire club.

Houghton Main did well to get as many as 160 from their 40 overs, given that they had two separate instances of losing two wickets in three balls.

A ferocious cut through point by Simon Ward got Houghton off to a good start but Toby Fynn got his man for 18.

There was a worrying turn in the 13th over when Houghton's Ian Simon, not wearing a helmet, hooked the ball into his eye.

There was a 20-minute break in play while he was stretchered off and taken to St Mary's Hospital in Paddington where he underwent an operation to drain blood from the area.

Fortunately he remained conscious throughout although he broke his cheekbone in several places.

That naturally stung Houghton and it was only through Imran Khan (37) and Biswick Kapala (33) that they regained their urgency.

It got them up to 161 and they had Reed's reply wobbling on 16-2 in the second over.

However, Houghton were a bowler down without Simon and the experience of Rob Lankester and Greaves brought a third-wicket partnership of 121.

That all but sealed the game with Lankester finally reaching 59 and Greaves getting to 67 not out in 61 balls, still there as the celebrations began in earnest.