WORCESTER PARK 120 (37.2) lost to DULWICH 122-8 (44.5) by 2 wickets
Dulwich won their final match of the season in Division 2 of the Ryman Surrey Championship, beating Worcester Park by two wickets in a nail-biting finish to achieve fifth place in the table.
Dulwich put their opponents in to bat, and bowled them out for 120 in just 37.2 overs. Rob Waite, whose 36 runs (off 34 balls) monopolized a sixth wicket stand of 40 in 8.2 overs with Josh Longhurst, was the only batsman to score more than 13. The innings was unusual in that Waqas Sagar was dismissed ‘handled the ball’ after instinctively trying to protect his stumps with his hand. The remaining nine wickets were shared around, with Naeem Iqbal taking 3-30 off eight overs, Stuart Ferguson 2-19 off six, and skipper Tom Savill, Alex Gledhill (whose ten overs cost just 21 runs), David Knightbridge and Matt Balch (in his first bowl of the season) taking one wicket each. Knightbridge had an eventful day, taking a wicket with a full toss when the batsman was bowled after turning his back on the ball, and then being removed from the attack for bowling two accidental beamers. Iqbal finished the season as Dulwich’s leading wicket taker with 25 at 20.12, while Gledhill took 21 at 20.09.
Dulwich opened their reply with Ed Stolle and keeper James Balmforth. The pair lasted only eight balls, when Balmforth sacrificed himself after both batsmen ended up at the same end. Stolle and Ferguson had advanced the score to 40 in the tenth over when Stolle became the first of four victims, all lbw, for left arm spinner Grant Helm. His aggressive innings of 27 had come off just 29 balls. Ferguson and Chris Stone took Dulwich to tea at a comfortable looking 42-2 after 11 overs, but Stone and Balch both fell to Helm after the interval to make it 54-4 in the 20th over. Ferguson and Sunil Mahey then advanced the score sensibly to 81, but Ferguson’s dismissal for 27 was quickly followed by Mahey for 11 and Nick Hudson for 1 to make it 86-7 after 30.2 overs. Savill joined Iqbal with the last three wickets still needing 35 for victory. They added 18 together in 5.3 overs before Savill fell for 10 with the score on 104. Iqbal and Gledhill took eight overs to knock off the final 18 runs, progressing mostly in singles until Iqbal hit a boundary to take his own score to 15 and bring his side victory after 44.5 overs.
Dulwich finished the season by winning five of their last six matches, beating all of the clubs that finished below them, while rising from eighth to fifth in the table. They will be looking to build on this fine performance next season.