Hertford 2nd XI Win Game of Over 600 Runs by Just 3
By Will Ray
Gus Joyce stars with 186* in high scoring thriller against Northwood.
On comfortably the hottest day of 2019 Hertford II’s entertained Northwood at Balls Park. Fortunately stand in Captain Gus Joyce won the toss and despite murmurings from the old lags of “lets bowl first, we can chase anything…” (they were numbers 10 and 11) Joyce elected to bat.
He comprehensively backed up his decision by timing the ball from the off, and despite losing his opening partner Harris who was pathetically bounced-out, he continued to blast the ball with his next partner Golder. After Golder departed for a useful 27 with the scoreboard on 94 a great partnership between Joyce and Cavener (30) of 106 flourished. By now Joyce had gone past his own 100 but was in no mood to stop, after Cavener and Ray departed he found a belligerent Dawson walking to the crease and both blazed their way to a massive team total of 319-4 from 50 overs - Joyce finished with a mighty 186* and Dawson with 43*.
A few early wickets and it should be game over for Hertford, however... the Northwood opening batsman had reached 92 at a good rate before the first wicket fell, and the next wicket didn’t fall until they were on 176. The main protagonist was opener Raveenthiraraja who was imperious in his 124 and only a great ball from Orchard could remove him with Northwood on 218.
From their Hertford began to take wickets more regularly but all of the Northwood batsman were making useful contributions pushing the score towards the Hertford total. Unbelievably, it all cam down to the final over where Northwood needed just 10 runs to win the game. Even more unbelievable was the fact that skipper Joyce trusted Ian Harris to bowl this over. The first ball was a dot, the next was adjudged to be a waist high no ball despite hitting the stumps halfway up (!), next ball dot. 9 needed from 4 balls and the next ball disappeared for four! Two singles followed leaving three needed from the last ball – Harris was unfazed and bowled a full ball, fielded it himself and took the bails off – Hertford won by 3 runs.
A game played in excellent spirit and great competitiveness saw Hertford come out as winners in a high-scoring thriller. The game was set up by a brilliant 186 from Joyce and in the end completed by solid bowling performances from Orchard (4-58) and Thompson in a rare economical spell (1-35).