Rivals keep their 100pc records in the chase for glory

Milford Hall and Penkridge maintained their 100 per cent starts to the new season in what has been a thrilling opening to the South Staffs County League season.

Daniel Green
Daniel Green

Milford made it five wins from five by claiming a narrow victory at Wolverhampton Second XI and sit top of the premier division as the early pacesetters.

Penkridge are in third spot having made it four victories from four by beating Hammerwich.

While sandwiched between then in second is Tamworth who secured a fourth win in five outings against Lichfield.

Milford’s perfect start to the campaign was maintained with a narrow four run win at Danescourt Road. Stuart Phazey’s side made 197 from their 40 overs with Ibby Thaman top scoring on 43.

Sahal Malvernkar (39no) led the support while Waqar Saleem (27) and Stu Phazey (21) also contributed – although the innings fell away in the closing stages as the last five wickets fell for the addition of just nine runs.

The Wolves reply began well with 89 on the board before Rob Firth made the breakthrough.

That sparked a collapse as the home side slipped to 121-5. Wolverhampton rallied and edged closer to their target but with Andrew Mackleworth needing to clear the rope off the last ball, he was caught in the covers by Tom Eley to give Milford the narrowest of victories.

Penkridge beat Hammerwich by 22 runs thanks to a fantastic 103no from Rana Hassan.

Hassan was the only player in his team to score above 20 with Penkridge’s next top scorer Mohammed Ishtiaq as they finished on 172-9 from their 40 overs.In reply, Hammerwich fell to 150 all out.

Tamworth sit second after a comfortable victory over Lichfield.

Jason Jakeman (77) and Scott Daly (58) led Ben Maddox’s side to 220-7 from their 40 overs. But Lichfield crashed to 105 all out in just 27.5 overs.

One of the most emphatic victories of the weekend was achieved by Beacon who hammered Brewood.

Brewood were bowled out just 101 runs from 36.1 overs with Beacon’s Matthew Cartwright (4-17) devastating with the ball.

And with the bat Oliver Walker (41) and Daniel Green (33) did the damage to ensure Beacon secured a seven-wicket victory.

Equally emphatic was Fordhouses’ win at Old Wulfrunians.

A batting collapse from Old Wulfs saw them dismissed for just 86 with Chris Guest (3-15) and Lewis Peat (3-20) both in top form.

Jem Stack (39no), Alex McChristie (26no) and Niall Cooper then quickly got the runs for Fordhouses to see them to a nine-wicket victory.

Meanwhile, in the North Staffs & South Cheshire League, Stafford picked up a 26-run victory at home to Silverdale.

Ramesh Gurung got the home side going with a classy 44 from 38 deliveries, while skipper Rob James continued his good form with an imperious 61 from 51 deliveries as Staffs finished on 193-9. In the reply, 15 year old Alfie Rushton got two wickets in two balls to finish with bowling igures of 3-31. Josh Williams (2-42) and Sean Connolly (2-25) also impressed with the ball as Silverdale struggled with the run chase.

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