Gallery: Gale takes Hertford attack apart with maiden Bar ton
PUBLISHED: 18:30 24 June 2008 | UPDATED: 22:22 26 October 2009
Home Counties Premier Cricket League Division Two (East) Hertford 194-9 Potters Bar 195-1 STEVE Gale cracked his maiden century for Potters Bar as the club humiliated Hertford by nine wickets on Saturday. Gale thumped 113 not out as Bar made light work
Home Counties Premier Cricket League Division Two (East)
Hertford 194-9 Potters Bar 195-1
STEVE Gale cracked his maiden century for Potters Bar as the club humiliated Hertford by nine wickets on Saturday.
Gale thumped 113 not out as Bar made light work of Hertford's 194-9 total in a rain-reduced match.
The Home Counties Premier League game didn't start to 1.30pm because the wet and drizzly conditions didn't allow any play before lunch.
Despite that delay, Len Cooper's men won the Division Two (East) fixture with an incredible 11 overs to spare.
That was down to an unbroken stand of 160 between opener Gale and former Sri Lankan Test player Lanka de Silva.
The pair came together at the crease following Nesan Jeyaratnam's dismissal on 35.
Bar opened up in a positive manner and Jeyaratnam struck four majestic boundaries as he looked to tuck into the friendly attack.
However, Nesan's innings came to an end when he drilled a half volley straight back at Scott Ruskin, who gleefully held a good return catch and Bar were 35-1.
De Silva and former Hatfield captain Gale then made the five an over target look comparatively easy.
They saw the hosts through to the tea interval at 56-1 after the final over before the break was slapped for 16 to give the innings some momentum.
Potters Bar still needed a further 138 runs from 27 overs.
After a pedestrian start following the stoppage, Gale and de Silva simply murdered the Hertford attack to all parts in a blistering assault.
Their 50 partnership came up in 61 balls and when Stevie G hammered the friendly leg spin of Krishan Canagasabey for 17 in his fifth over, Bar had motored through the 100 mark and also brought up the Herts county player's half century.
More carnage came as Ruskin was hit to the boundary ropes with greater regularity than he is used to and it was in no time that the 100 partnership arrived.
Hertford's bowling changes didn't work either as bringing on Sandun Dias backfired as his first over disappeared for 11 runs.
Young James Mead, just 15 years of age, then had to suffer two overs for 37 as Hertford lost the plot.
Sri Lankan star de Silva completed his fifth half century of the season in 59 balls.
Despite surviving a run out chance, a shout for leg before and a drop catch, Gale notched his first ton in Potters Bar colours.
His majestic unbeaten ton contained 14 fours and three sixes and came off 82 balls.
It was a miserable day for the visitors from Balls Park, in keeping with the drizzly and dank morning.
With no play possible before lunch, the match was reduced to a 46/38 over fixture.
Home skipper Cooper won a vital toss and asked the visitors to have first use of a pitch that looked a touch green but on the whole would still offer plenty of runs.
Nick Walker opened up and straight away found the gloomy conditions to his liking as he time and again beat the bat in a hostile and fine spell of fast bowling.
At the other end, Will van der Maat struggled early on but soon found a semblance of line and length following his Northants Academy stint.
After Hertford opener Wade found the boundary with some nice square cuts, the first wicket came about in farcical fashion.
Canagasabey was down the same end as his partner, not knowing whether to run back or stay where he was.
After much confusion, Charlie Hodge calmly lobbed the ball to Walker, who whipped off the bails and the visitors were 19-1.
The second wicket didn't take long in coming as Wade was beaten for pace by the impressive Walker and his off-stump was soon cartwheeling out of the ground and at 21-2 Bar were in the ascendancy.
Former Leicestershire man Walker cleaned up Lele for five and ex-skipper Ruskin fell to the same bowler for just one and Hertford were 53-4.
That nearly became 53-5 as only a no-ball call saved Chris Box after Walker had removed his off-stump in spectacular style.
Box and professional Dias then played well and started to move the score along nicely against some tight, but not overly penetrating bowling.
Dias took an Adam Norman over for 18 and he reached his 50 with a towering six over extra cover off of Paul McGee's second over.
His 50 arrived in just 70 balls and contained three sixes and four fours.
However, as Hertford strived for extra runs, wickets kept falling and Box went to a juggled catch at mid-wicket, handing van der Maat his first league wicket for the club.
Dias went for 60 as he edged to the keeper and that's twice in two weeks McGee has removed the overseas starlet.
Skipper Rob Darby started slowly but soon became accustomed to the pitch and started to find the gaps with embarrassing ease as he and youngster Elliott King put on 47 for the eighth wicket to take the score beyond 150.
King fell for 19 as he went back attempting to cut spinner McGee and ended up missing a quicker ball.
Darby managed to complete a well-made 50 at a run a ball.
After successive dropped chances, Darby picked out van der Maat, who dived head first and held a fine, low catch at long-off.
Some bat on ball at the end of the Hertford innings saw the visitors post a credible 194-9 from their 46 overs.
However, that total was soon put into perspective by Gale's fireworks.