A destructive display of batting power propelled Watford Haidery to their first Watford Observer Fourteen14 Shield triumph for 30 years as holders Abbots Langley were swept aside by more than 100 runs in last night’s final.

Haidery had already demonstrated their prowess by chasing down West Herts’ 164 with relative comfort to secure their place in the final at the Stags’ Park Avenue home, but they were to surpass that total by compiling a mammoth 198-7 off their 14, eight-ball overs.

Abbots’ grip on the trophy was loosening fast and after losing a couple of early wickets in their reply, they opted to bat out their overs with their title defence ending on 94-4.

Such a dominant margin of victory had not looked on the cards for the opening five overs though, with Abbots very much in the contest – only for them to be staring down the barrel five overs later.

Haidery captain Ali Shah chose to bat after winning the toss, but it was the spin of Matt Dunstone (4-49) that was to take centre stage early on.

The Abbots bowler, who won the man-of-the-match award in last year’s final victory over Kings Langley, picked up three wickets in his first three overs, removing Ali Nawaz (0), Toqeer Hussain (8) and his father Tanveer Hussain (6) to leave Haidery 44-3 at the end of the fifth over.

The dismissals of Toqeer and Tanveer looked potentially pivotal because both batsmen had played key roles in their side’s semi-final victory. Crucially though, opener Shadrach Gittens-Browne was still in the middle after surviving a tricky opening and he was to set the tone for the onslaught that followed

Browne struck his second and third fours of the innings as Anish Khiroya’s (0-31) third over went for 16, but worse was to very quickly follow for the Shield holders.

James Allan replaced Dunstone in the attack but saw his first – and only – over disappear for 26 runs as new batsman Zawar Hussain and Browne found the boundary five times in six deliveries, culminating in the first six of the match.

The complexion of the final had changed dramatically in the space of 16 balls. From a potentially awkward position of 44-3, Haidery had raced along to 86-3 – and they still had half of their innings remaining.

Abbots captain Matt Parkins introduced himself and briefly partially stemmed the tide with nine coming off his opening over as Browne reached 50.

But that was to be the final time Haidery were to be restricted to below double figures from each set of eight deliveries, as the remaining overs were struck for 20, 17, 19, 14, 22 and 11 respectively.

Browne, who was later named man of the match, saw his impressive contribution come to an end in the 10th over for 69, but there was to be no respite for Abbots as Kamber Hussain joined his brother in the middle and proceeded to clear the rope four times in the next three overs en route to a rapid 36.

A total in excess of 200 looked increasingly inevitable heading into the final over, but with Haidery having long since set out their shot-making stall Parkins (3-49) was able to claim two late wickets, including that of Zawar (38).

It had been a brutal onslaught that had seen 154 runs scored from the final 72 deliveries of the innings.

Starting their reply in fading light, George Agius (1) and Matthew Longworth (6) both fell to the bowling of Qaiser (2-15) by the end of the fourth over as Abbots slipped to 13-2.

Opener Allan (22) and Simon Hamilton (36) played significant parts in ensuring the contest went the distance, sharing in a fifth-wicket partnership of 57 that lasted into the 10th over.

The outcome had long since been inevitable though, as Haidery won the trophy for the first time since 1989 and a second time in the competition’s history.