19th August 2017
Offley and Stopsley* 111-10
Greenwood Park continued their promotion push with a comprehensive 95-run victory over third place Offley and Stopsley.
The win puts Park 22 points ahead of their Saturday hosts with just two league games to go.
It makes this weekend’s fixture against table-topping Radlett a potential title decider – although Greenwood will have to record a conclusive win.
Having been put into bat, the Chiswell Green based outfit struggled early on and found themselves 31-3 from 10.2 overs.
Openers Ed Gray and Vishal Pujari both went for 14 with Captain Chris Kent only managing one before he was caught.
Aman Talha then joined Rakib Ali at the crease and the pair put on a determined 59 for the fourth wicket.
Both batsmen showed little signs of struggling on the damp surface before Talha was out stumped for 29.
Shafaat Hussain came and went without troubling the scorers before Arslan Khan contributed a crucial partnership of 97 with Ali.
Ali was once again in supreme form, smashing 13 fours and one six on his way to a counter-attacking 96.
But once he was dismissed, Greenwood’s lower order could only contribute another 14 runs as Park were all out for 206 in 45.1 overs.
With the new ball in hand, Ajmal Hussain was a huge attacking threat – taking 2-18 from 10 consecutive overs.
He dovetailed superbly with Khan, who delivered a match-winning spell of 4-27 as Park took wickets at regular intervals.
The bowlers were supported well by the ever-consistent Jimmy Otter, who took three sharp chances behind the stumps in another strong individual display.
S. Hussain collected two late wickets – as well as a sensational run-out – but it was Pujari who claimed the final dismissal and sealed 30 points for his team.
Having bowled Offely out for 111 in 41.4 overs, Park will take great confidence into next Saturday’s crunch fixture against Radeltt as Greenwood once again demonstrated their promotion credentials.