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Beckenham thrashed as Club secure 2nd place

Blackheath's 1st XI demolished Beckenham at home in the penultimate round of Kent Premier League games. The result secured the Club's status as one of the competition's top 2 teams but Hartley's defeat of Lordswood later in the afternoon erased any feint hopes of a championship title. 

Beckenham had no hesitation in batting on winning the toss at a warm Rectory Field and with 11 coming from the first over, including a no-ball free hit and a dropped catch, the tone was set for an all-action encounter.

The visitors were racing along at around 8 runs per over but a wicket each for Tanweer Sikandar and Warren Lee meant that the game was finely poised with the Beckenham total on 72-2 at the 9 over mark. The introduction of Dipayan Paul swung the game dramatically in Blackheath's favour as 72-2 became 72-4 in the off-spinner's first over.  

The introduction of Tom Mees reduced Beckenham to 76-6 as he had the Foxgrove outfit's Kent Professional and remaining opener finely snaffled by Joe Kerridge standing up to the stumps. 

Beckenham's youthful lower middle-order showed some resistance but it was no match for the skills and persistence of a fresh Jahid Ahmed who worked his way through the tail to end on 3-23, whilst Mees fittingly took the final wicket to end with 3-28.

With around an hour remaining before the originally scheduled tea interval, the teams turned straight around and the Blackheath openers began their reply at a pace that suggested they had no intentions of the tie lasting beyond the break. 

Daniel Bell-Drummond is one of the leading First Class run scorers in the country and following recent success for the England Lions, is tipped by some to make a full England Tour Party during the winter, but such accolades have not diminished his humility as he turned out for the Club immediately following a 4 day game in Bristol. 

He raced to 51 from 35 balls which included hallmark hammering drives punctuated by deft flicks and glides. The late season form of George Wells meant that fireworks were coming from both ends and not to be out-shone, he completed his own fifty in 37 balls which included two huge maximums. 

Bell-Drummond mistimed a mid-wicket brush which brought Tanweer Sikandar to the wicket, but his calmer elegance also realised 14 runs from just 10 deliveries and so Blackheath wrapped up a 9 wicket win in just 14.3 overs.

Although the 2016 season looks set to realise the Club's highest ever Premier League points tally, and so can be looked back on with some pride, Blackheath's 1st XI will regret under par performances in key games - including losses to the league's bottom two sides.

Blackheath Cricket Club is one of the leading cricket clubs in London. Formed over one hundred and fifty years ago and sporting a colourful history, Blackheath fields 7 league teams every Saturday, up to 3 teams on a Sunday and also operates an extensive youth section.

The 1st XI play in the Premier Division of the Kent League, one of the strongest amateur cricket leagues in the UK. The Club’s 2nd, 3rd and 4th XIs also play in to the Kent Premier League structure making the number of opportunities available for high level cricket at one club relatively unique. As such the Club has recently opened a new second ground at the Academy in Woolwich.

The Club’s other XIs, Sunday teams, midweek programme and vibrant social scene mean there is a place for everyone from current internationals to complete beginners.

Blackheath also has one of the leading youth sections in the UK, regularly progressing to the latter stages of the ECB National U13 and U15 Cup competitions. An ECB Focus Club with Clubmark accreditation and a wealth of experienced coaches, Blackheath provides an environment where young people can enjoy the game recreationally but also supports a steady stream of young people to access county age-group squads.

Blackheath Cricket Club is situated in the London Borough of Greenwich but serves much of central south and east London. As such the Club prides itself on a diverse membership with players from around the UK and around the world currently calling the Club’s Rectory Field ground home.

Picture courtesy of Keith Gillard
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