Pride and delight as Reed finally break their duck with victory over West Herts
- Credit: DANNY LOO
Reed restored some pride and added a big dollop of delight as they recorded their first victory of the Herts Cricket League Premier Division.
It has been a tough year for the Blacksmith's Lane-based club as their opening 12 games ended in defeat.
Performances haven't been as bad as that sounds but luck was not on their side at times. However, a balling draw away to Harpenden last week broke the rot and with threatening rain clouds only accounting for a short time lost, they recorded a well-deserved seven-wicket success over West Herts.
Skipper Tom Greaves hit the winning runs and he would have reflected with great contentment on winning the toss and putting the visitors into bat on a damp but drying wicket.
That allowed a rampant Ed Wharton to scythe through their top order, including the scalp of Sri Lankan international Priyamal Perrera, caught skilfully at slip by a diving Rob Lankester.
That capped a fine opening spell of 3-22 in 11 overs for Wharton and he would eventually end with 3-33.
Toby Fynn then carried on the attack with a mammoth 16-over stint, yielding 2-41 and five maidens and he was ably supported by Greaves who took 2-51 including the resolute Misem Zaidi for 52, the first of Sean Tidey's two stumpings.
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The innings was quickly polished off by Kapil Dave's spin as he tricked the remaining three batsmen into false strokes to take 3-25 and leave West Herts all out for 155.
And Reed always looked in control of their reply with Will Heslam leading the way with a fluent 37, including five crisply struck boundaries.
When he was bowled by the dangerous Perrera, Reed already had 70 on the board and his departure just meant Lankester took over the onslaught, putting on another 50 runs with the watchful Matt Sampson (16).
He was finally out for a scintillating 74, a measure of which can be gauged by the 11 fours and two sixes he struck.
It left Reed needing just 18 which the skipper and Sam Osborne managed after a short rain delay.
They remain bottom but will go to North Mymms on Saturday with renewed confidence.