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Hartley lift Shepherd Neame Kent Cricket Premier League title

Sunday 30th August 2015

Hartley Country Club were crowned Shepherd Neame Kent Cricket Premier League Champions this year having gained ten points for an incomplete match against Sandwich Town on Saturday, writes Errol Valentine.

Despite Sevenoaks Vine having a game in hand on Monday, they cannot now catch the leaders but the tussle for the final relegation spot spills over to the last Saturday of the season.

By taking ten points to Bromley's seven on Saturday, Sandwich close the gap on Bromley to nine points.

Sandwich entertain relegated Folkestone this coming Saturday and Bromley face a tough trip to Sevenoaks Vine. The three points advantage Sandwich gained means that if they win this week, Bromley will also have to win to stay up. It will be a very tense day for both clubs.

The rain sadly intervened for almost the first time this season meaning only two matches reached a conclusive result on Saturday but it was an incomplete game at Hartley which clinched the title for the home club.

A thoroughly deserved trophy but rather a disappointing end in them achieving it. They invited Sandwich to bat at Culvey Close and at 119-5 Sandwich looked in trouble, Dan Redwood with 3-37 doing much of the damage.

There then followed an excellent 92 run partnership between Jacobus Maritz and Tom Chapman ended when Chapman departed for 45 and the total on 211-6.

Maritz went on to a useful 88 from 61 balls and assisted by a brisk 35 from 20 by Ashleigh Cox, Sandwich posted a respectable total of 275. Rain came in the tea interval and no further play was possible.

2014 title holders Sevenoaks Vine did all they could to keep in hunt by beating Folkestone at Cheriton Road but sadly for them their victory was all in vain, save perhaps it almost secures the runners up spot.

The Vine elected to bat and their total of 183 all out was largely due to opener John Bowden 62 and number three Harry Levy 52 as Thomas Jones with 6-33 was the thorn in their side.

Levy was also the star of the show when the Vine took the field, his 5-21 was instrumental in a disappointing Folkestone response of 138 all out with only Sam Ireland 33 and James Lilley 34 making any significant contribution.

The other part of the County to escape the rain was Tunbridge Wells, where the home side were well and truly beaten by visitors Lordswood.

The home side were invited to bat and thanks to a fine 107 by Nick Selman and a knock of 46 by Marcus O'Riordan the home side reached 236 when they were bowled out in the 50th over.

Selman's 100 apart the star performance of the day was the 7-41 by Lordswood's Ranjit Singh. Lordswood took control with the bat and 62 by Palash Joshi, 59 by Greg Smith and an unbeaten 45 by Chris Piesley saw them romp home winners by 6 wickets with 6.3 overs in the tank.

A first century of the season oy Chris Isles who carried his bat for 106, 75 by will MacVicar and a 15 ball 44 by Alex Blake saw Beckenham to an impressive 296-4 against Bromley at Plaistow Lane. No further play took place as the rain swept in.

Warren Lee with 72 saved the day for Blackheath as they were bowled out for a disappointing 161 with Adam Ball picking up 4-20. The Bexley response was well underway at 64-1 with George Wells unbeaten on 41 when the rain sadly arrived here also.

We still do not know who will join the Premier League in 2016. Current leaders by one point Dartford travel to second-placed the Mote on Saturday with the winners guaranteed the title and promotion.

Third-placed Tenterden travel to fourth placed Whitstable. It is highly probable that the winner of this match will also gain promotion as runners up unless the loser of the Dartford v the Mote clash gains maximum bonus points. It could not be much closer.

SHEPHERD NEAME KENT CRICKET PREMIER LEAGUE

WEEK 17 RESULTS – 29 AUGUST 2015

Blackheath 161-10 incomplete match v Bexley 64-1

Bromley incomplete match v Beckenham 296-4

Folkestone 138-10 lost to Sevenoaks Vine 183-10 by 45 runs

Hartley incomplete match v Sandwich Town 275-10

Tunbridge Wells 236-10 lost to Lordswood 237-4 by 6 wickets