HEMEL HEMPSTEAD second XI's rich vein of form continued as they ended Abbots Langley's four-match unbeaten run with a 73-run victory in Division Two on Saturday, June 15.

Batting first, all of Hemel's top six got into double figures, but no-one went on to make a big score.

Giles Berry top scored with 31, while Phil Hobbs, continuing his fine form, picked another three scalps for the home side.

Having rolled over Chipperfield the previous week for under 100, Hemel's in-form bowlers were again in rampant mood as they ripped through the Abbots' batting line-up.

Paul Harrington led the way with five wickets, including the four wickets to fall early on, to leave Abbots in the mire at 33-4.

Nick Hodgins' side failed to recover as Ifzal Nawaz did the same to the lower order, with 4-8 in just six overs to seal Hemel's fourth win of the campaign.

Chipperfield laboured to their third win of the season as they made hard work made of overcoming basemant club Hatfield.

The visitors, opting to bat first, never recovered from a bad start of losing four wickets for just 32, and had to rely upon a seventh-wicket stand of 28 to bring any respectability to the score.

Richard Wale returned to clean up the tail, with three late wickets, as Hatfield were dismissed for 94.

Chipperfield made a positive start in reply, with Justin King accounting for 27 of the first 33 runs scored before he was dismissed.

Nick Crumpton and Bruce Kilby (33) then got tied down by the Hatfield spinners, and it took Chipperfield until the 39th over to reach their target for the loss of five wickets.

Kings Langley are still left searching for their elusive first win of the season, but they picked up 19 points for their efforts at home to Broxbourne.

A glorious 117 not out from Langley's Caribbean import Richardo Mohammed, his third century of the season, provided the backbone of the home side's total of 203 all out.

With maximum batting points all ready secured, Langley attacked form the outset, and their youthful opening attack of Mark Brazier, 13, and Andrew Colquhoun, both picked up two wickets in their opening bursts.

The medium pace of Phil Robinson was rewarded with three victims, but, despite two overs at the last man, Langley fell one wicket short of a deserved and much-needed victory.

Northwood were on the receiving end of an indifferent umpiring display as they suffered their third defeat in their last four matches at home to Knebworth Park second XI.

Having seen Knebworth bat well to reach 218-5, Northwood's reply was plagued by a succession of dubious lbw decisions that eventually proved their undoing.

Ranjit Latchman and Tom Marley-Shaw compiled 62 for the first wicket before Marley-Shaw became the first of six lbw victims.

The loss of the next eight wickets for 103 looked to be sending Northwood to an inevitable defeat.

However, a spirited last-wicket stand of 44 between Andy Powell-Williams (61) and Raj Latchman put the match back in the balance and Northwood in sight of a famous win until the umpire struck again to give Powell-Williams out to another highly questionable decision.

June 21, 2002 11:30