Century from ex-England man Shah not enough for Welwyn Garden City

PUBLISHED: 14:41 27 May 2015 | UPDATED: 14:41 27 May 2015

WGC's Owais Shah

WGC's Owais Shah

Archant

It was a case of so close, but yet so far for Welwyn Garden City against league leaders Sawbridgeworth on Saturday despite an unbeaten 127 by their former England man Owais Shah.

WGC came as close to a win as they have all year but a combination of poor fielding, bowling and an excellent rearguard action from the home side, meant that for the third week on the trot WGC came away winless.

After a delay to the start due to rain, Sawbridgeworth won the toss and inserted WGC on a now damp and seaming pitch.

WGC immediately lost Louis Champion and despite a small second wicket partnership between skipper Jamie Hewitt (66) and Matthew Hill (18), after the dismissal of Hill, WGC also lost Alex Chalker, Andrew Nolan, Scott Walter and Hewitt in quick succession to find themselves six down.

Throughout all this Shah remained cool at the crease and he batted throughout the innings for 127 not out.

He was aided by Simon Greenall with an excellent run a ball 51 and WGC closed with a competitive 288-7 from their 50 overs.

An early breakthrough was crucial and that is what WGC got.

They dismissed skipper Danny Wilson and opener Charlie Rudkin cheaply and after sending former Stevenage man Gary Brown back to the pavilion for 26 the home side were in a bit of trouble.

When they found themselves at 113-6 they were in even more trouble and the game seemed to be WGC’s to lose.

However, either a lack of belief or skill meant WGC couldn’t create any more chances as Alex Axon (100 from 79 balls) and Ben Waring (56) compiled a partnership of 150 to put Sawbo back in the driving seat.

Walter (3-55) came back to dismiss Axon and Hewitt (2-30) got rid of Waring and after Hewitt also sent number 10 George Kenny back cheaply, Sawbridgeworth needed four from the last over nine down.

They secured it with four wides and the game was over.

To a neutral or a home side supporter it was an excellent game of cricket, however to lowly WGC it was a real gut-wrenching defeat.

WGC will be looking for that opening win of the season this coming Saturday when the host defending champions Radlett.


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