Herts Cricket League: Matthew Grant secures dramatic last-ball win for Welwyn Garden City
- Credit: Picture: DANNY LOO
If thrills and excitement are you’re thing then Welwyn Garden City Cricket Club may be the place to go.
After clinching a win over Radlett in the final over last week, WGC managed to push the tension to the very last ball this time around as they beat Bishop’s Stortford by three wickets.
Matthew Grant had the starring role in this great escape with the young Aussie all-rounder smashing 41 runs from just 25 balls.
He has had an exceptional season so far, scoring 212 runs at an average of 53.00 and taking 35 wickets at an average of 20.77.
But with one over to go at Cricketfields Lane, Grant knew he had to score 18 runs to give his side an unlikely victory.
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Two sixes off the first three balls was the perfect response but a two and a dot meant four was required off the final delivery.
But Grant decided that if you’ve got to go to the boundary, then you might as well go over it, and a huge six was the perfect way for the visitors to finish the match.
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Grant had earlier taken three wickets, as had James Hewitt, as Welwyn dismissed the hosts for 242, taking the last eight wickets for just 71 runs.
A stand of 116 between Hertfordshire pair Reece Hussain (60) and Dominic Chatfield (70) had been the main contribution and a similar stand of 107 from Owais Shah and Dan Blacktopp also proved crucial for Welwyn.
Shah was eventually caught for 49 but Blacktopp batted beautifully for a superb 97.
When his wicket fell though WGC were 217-7 and well behind on the run rate.
Fortunately that was the moment Grant took control of the spotlight.
Victory means Welwyn have confirmed their play-off place in the Herts Cricket League Premier Division and they will battle with North Mymms, Totteridge Millhillians and Potters Bar, the visitors to Digswell Park on Saturday, to decide the final positions.
The seconds limped to a narrow two-wicket win over Datchworth in Division Three A.
They had put the visitors in but thanks to a stunning six-over spell from spinner Jason Lewis (5-9) they had them bowled out for 90.
But in reply they found the bowling of Tom Bennett and Nitin Sahni just as tricky and it needed Andrew Lovell (44) and Edward Tucker (17*) to see them across the line.
The thirds lost by five wickets to Tewin in Division Six A while the fourths had a comfortable 154-run win at Shenley Village 3rds.