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Kent League Round-Up: Bickley Park & Canterbury Promoted

Tuesday 29th August 2023

Congratulations to Canterbury and Bickley Park, who have both been promoted to the Premier Division.

The LV= Insurance County Championship comes to a head next month

We welcome Nottinghamshire to The Spitfire Ground in one of three first-class fixtures in September:

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With just one round of matches left to be played in the Kent Cricket League season, Chatham based Lordswood Cricket Club, captained by former Scottish international Calum MacLeod, will become champions for the first time, if they win their final match, away to already relegated Holmesdale. They have an eight point lead at the top of the Premier Division, over their nearest rivals, Tunbridge Wells, who are away to St Lawrence and Highland Court, who will need to win and hope Lordswood falter to snatch the title. Bexley in third spot, are 15 points adrift of the top, and looked to have missed their chance.

There is a real dog fight at the bottom, to avoid the second relegation place, which Blackheath currently occupy on 160 points, with Holmesdale already down. Just above Blackheath are Sevenoaks Vine with 167 points, and the two sides meet at the Rectory Field, with the losers likely to go down. But Hayes also on 167,  and Sandwich on 168 points, are not out of danger, depending on other results. The weather could also intervene into the mix.

Lordswood had a narrow seven run victory, at home to Minster (Sheppey), at the weekend, under Duckworth-Lewis, after the visitors needing 144 to win from 28 overs, could only reach 136 for 3, Ed Moore 60. The Division leaders posted 283 for 9, in their innings, Ed Taylor 59, Bradley Goldsack 49, Linden Lockhart 42, Max Wood 41, Essex bowler Aron Nijjar 3 for 49.

Tunbridge Wells gained an impressive 86 run victory, over Bexley at the Nevill Ground. Kent Second Eleven wicket-keeper, Sam Smith scored an excellent century, 102, with nine fours and a six, in his sides 226 for 9, Calvin Johnson 40, Harry Dowling 3 for 34. They then bowled the visitors out for 110, George Haley 50, Matt Barker 3 for 17, Michael Waller 4 for 17.

Carlos Maynard scored a century 111, with 18 boundaries, for relegated Holmesdale in their 295 for 9, Henry Merrick 44, Sahil Shah 3 for 35. away to Sevenoaks Vine, who won by nine wickets under D/L, 133 for 1 in 24.5 overs, Kent batter, Ben Compton 61 not out, Chris Vernon 54 not out.

Blackheath gained a vital six wicket win, away at Sandwich, to keep their survival hopes alive. They bowled the home side out for just 98, Cody Nieuwoudt 44, some excellent bowling from Tanweer Sikanda 4 for 5, and Matt Golding 5 for 32. The visitors were  set 76 to win from 31 overs under D/L and reached the winning total in 22.5 overs with four wickets down.

The match between Hayes, and St Lawrence, was abandoned because of heavy rain, after the visitors had reached 134 for 8 from 30 overs.

Congratulations to Canterbury, and Bickley Park, who have both been promoted to the top Division out of the Championship, six points separating the two sides, Canterbury on 234, and Bickley Park, back in the top flight at the first attempt, with 228, third placed Bromley, on 206 unable to catch them.

Despite their promotion, Canterbury suffered a surprise defeat, at home to Dartford, at the weekend losing by five wickets. They were bowled out for just 99 runs, Kent Academy student, Barney Ford 3 for 25. Ekansh Singh then scored 39 as the visitors reached their winning target 100 for 5.

All-rounder, Elliott Hooper, again starred for Bickley Park, in their eight wicket win, away at The Mote, who were all out for 133, Hooper taking an impressive 6 for 17, Tom Harvey 68. He then scored 64, as the visitors cruised to victory 137 for 2.

There were two century makers for Whitstable, away at Linden Park, but all to no avail, as the match was abandoned with no result, when the weather intervened. Bryan Gould hit 124, with 15 boundaries and five sixes, and Lian Tegg 104, with two sixes and 10 fours, in their sides 301 for 7, but the home side were unable to start their innings.

Relegated OD CUACO went down by eight wickets, away at Folkestone, all out for 214, Joe East 43, Pip Francis 44, Kane Wheeler 3 for 24. A century for Eknoor Singh 103 ,for the home side with two sixes, and 12 boundaries, Shahab Sheikh 60, in their winning 215 for 2.

There was another abandoned match between Beckenham and Bromley, the home side facing eight deliveries and scoring one run, when the weather intervened, a disappointment for them, after bowling their opponents out for 94, Saad Khan 3 for 22, Johan Malcolm 3 for 26.

By Peter Burrowes

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