Belhus 1st 399-5
Woodford Green 1st 286 all out
Belhus kept up the pressure on league leaders Basildon and Pitsea after a stunning performance in an incredible run-fest at North Stifford on Saturday. In this 50-overs per side Shepherd Neame Essex League division three fixture, Danny Joyce achieved the fifth highest individual score by a Belhus player when he struck a majestic 172 not out. This astonishing feat saw Danny exceed 1,000 runs for his club this season and propelled the team score to a record high in all of its 52 seasons. Younger brother Joe supported well with 81 runs, until he was dismissed leg before wicket by Aamir Latif (2-57).
With home opener Gavin Jefferies hitting 71, Belhus were clearly in a strong position but The Green had clearly not read the home side’s script. Visiting skipper David Hawkes powered his way to a fine 124, while opening colleague Hamaad Sayyed contributed 33 runs. By the time number three batsman Sam Davies chalked up 34 runs, alarm bells began ringing in the heads of the Belhus fielders and spectators who were dotted around the picturesque village green, as if watching theatre in the round.
Nerves were settled when Billy Winter picked up three wickets at a cost of 38 runs from 9.2 overs while Martin Guilbert and Owen Jefferies picked up two wickets each. By the time the players had made their exit to raptuous applause in front of the pavilion, Belhus knew that Woodford Green had played their part in creating another milestone for a Belhus cricket match, that being one of total aggregate runs, all 685 of them, a new record in quite an extraordinary day’s cricket.
Ashmanhaugh 131 all out
Belhus entertained Norfolk tourists Ashmanhaugh CC in a midweek fixture which produced an extraordinary statistic when the Belhus first eleven captain, W D Read, took four catches in the outfield – which is the second occasion that he has acheived the feat this season. The visitors were sent spinning by M C Cansdale who claimed 3-11 from six overs (three maidens) and he received valuable support from Danny Joyce with 2-7 from three overs. With David Taylor, Richard Waters, James Banner and Danny Norris picking up one wicket each, they were joined by the extremely rare sight of Read joining the attack, at least for one over. The master batsman will no cherish his wicket having caught and bowled the Ashmanhaugh number eleven to wrap up the innings. After tea, Owen Jefferies hit 37 in the Belhus innings until he was trapped leg before. It was left to brothers Danny and Joe Joyce to see Belhus home with 41 not out and 36 not out respectively. Pick of the tourist bowling attack was Ahmed with 3-36 from six overs.
Woodford Green 2nd 223-8 dec
Belhus 2nd 224-5
Fifteen year old Ryan Wells struck an undefeated 80 to propel Belhus to the top of the Shepherd Neame Essex League second eleven division three table after this five-wicket win at Woodford on Saturday. With his captain Chris Baker hitting 67, Belhus are just one point above their rivals Basildon and Pitsea – and the two clubs meet this coming Saturday. Woodford Green started the game stongly, with opening batsman Robert Newman scoring 61 until he become one of Marc Lewis’s three victims. Lewis finished with 3-50 from his tantalising spin, his twelve-over spell yielding two maidens. Baker opened the Belhus bowling and had picked up 2-22 from a short spell of just five overs. Shazhad Riaz promised to cause an upset for Woodford Green when he claimed 4-60 from 15 overs (one maiden), but then Baker and Wells yielded the willow in a match-winning performance at the crease, these two put on 140 for the fifth wicket until Baker was caught to become one of Riaz’s four scalps.
Belhus 2nd 281-6
Old Dartfordians 169-8
Ryan Wells rounded off a magnificent weekend as he hit 96 from 85 deliveries to follow on from his 80 not out the previous day. The level-headed youngster fell just one boundary hit short of what would have been a glorious ton. He put on 190 for the first wicket with James Banner (78 runs) inside 27 overs. Billy Winter contributed 21 runs then Jack Plane produced a cameo innings of 28 runs from 24 balls. Billy Winter was the most successful Belhus bowler with 3-34 as Belhus comfortably won this forty overs per side social fixture at North Stifford.
Woodford Green 3rd XI 216-8 dec
Belhus 3rd XI 220-1
The Belhus batsman made exceptionally light work of chasing down the 216 runs set by Woodford Green, as Connor Elliot hit 85 from just 68 balls faced and opening colleague Tom Thompson ended on 69 not out from 79 deliveries. Belhus had scored an incredible 127 runs off the first twenty overs and the onslaught had clearly left the visitors with very few ideas left up their sleeve. To rub salt into the Woodford Green wound, number three batsman Mathew Lewis hit an undefeated 43 from 39 deliveries to seal an emphatic nine-wicket victory. Earlier, David Taylor was the pick of the Belhus attack, claiming 4-61 from 16 overs four of which were maidens. Alan Maidment was equally impressive with 3-49 from the same number of overs and also had four maidens. Belhus are currently in third spot, eight points behind joint leaders Colchester and East Essex CC and Basildon and Pitsea CC.
Belhus 4th 128 all out
Hornchurch 5th 130-9
Belhus were edged out by brave resistance from Hornchurch’s last pair at the Metropolitan Police Sports Ground at Chigwell on Saturday. Green contributed 54 for the home side and he received valuable support from Heath with 37 and James was undefeated in the tense finish with 22 not out. This Hornchurch team have not lost a league game since 4th June and this latest win keeps the Belhus fourth eleven at the wrong end of the division two table. They are now four points above the relegation place, which is currently held by Leigh on Sea.
Pegasus and Corringham U11 260-8
Belhus U11 288-5
The Belhus under eleven team won their Sunday encounter with Pegasus and Corringham by 28 runs. Pegasus took first knock on their own track and posted 260 for the loss of eight wickets. Joshua Reynolds and Ben Garwood picked up two wickets each with some excellent bowling. Another fine fielding performance fromthe visitors saw two run outs from direct hits. Jonathan Bright and Jude Ranson gave valuable support by taking one wicket each. For Pegasus, Freddie top scored with ten runs and later capped a strong all-round performance by taking two wickets. After the break, Belhus lost early wickets in this pairs fixture, however Garwood impressed with the bat hitting 10 not out, while Reynolds accumulated 18, also undefeated, as his fine season continued.
Benfleet U13 134-3
Belhus U13 58 all out
Benfleet had two batsmen reach the South Essex Youth League’s compulsory retirement score of 25 at Woodside Park on Sunday, and this ultimately proved to be a big difference between the two teams. The Belhus attack was strangely off-key, with the notable exception of the ever improving George Maidment, who picked up two wickets from three overs at a cost of just two runs (one maiden). The three retirees from Benfleet were March and Wheeler with 26 and 25 respectively. Fogg hit 18 for Benfleet, while his Belhus namesake, not believed to be a relation, started the Belhus innings brightly with 11 runs. Billy Maidment hit 14 and Belhus and Matthew Wakeling also contributed to the run-chase with ten runs, until he was bowled by Oliver Kersley. But then fourth change bowler Lee thwarted any hopes that a resurgent Belhus had of victory. He took an astonishing five wickets for just six runs inside two overs including three wickets in five balls in his second over. In between the damage, Lee bowled two wides and a no ball which made up the six-run cost.