October 26th, 2016

Losing draw for leaders Leamington

Updated: 3:13 pm, May 07, 2015

LEAMINGTON came away from Whitchurch with a losing draw in Saturday’s Birmingham League Division Two encounter, which was reduced to 38 overs per side due to a rain-delayed start.

Whitchurch won the toss and unsurprisingly chose to bowl first. However, despite losing Jonathan Wigley early for 4, the in-form Shahbaz Alam and 19-year-old Australian Max Webber set about compiling an excellent 101 partnership for the second wicket.

Webber was the aggressor as he made use of the short boundary straight and hit four huge sixes in his 54-ball 63.

Mark Lewis then joined Alam at the crease and the pair continued Webber’s fine work as the pair added 85 for the third wicket to help the visitors finish on 228-4 off their 38 overs.

Alam’s 85 came off 112 balls before being bowled by Zafran Ali (2-32) and Lewis chipped in with an excellent 48 not out off 41 balls.

In reply, Whitchurch set about chasing down a daunting score by being agressive from the start as Jaffri (21) an Ishtiaq (28) provided the perfect platform for the middle order.

After nine overs, the rain came again which meant that Whitchurch needed 181 from 30 overs to achieve a winning draw and from 71-2 captain and brother of England’s Moeen Ali, Omar, alongside Ijaz Yousaf added 110 for the third wicket to reach the winning draw target.

Ali (58) was out in the last over of the day but it was the innings of Yousaf that really took the game away from the visitors. Yousaf’s brilliant 61 not out came off only 42 balls but Leamington will rue dropping him when he was only on 2 as the result could have been much different.

Yousaf’s 61 not out followed his brilliant 100 at Leamington earlier in the season. For Leamington, there was a wicket apiece for Warner, Ashgar and Thornton as Whitchurch’s innings ended on 184-3 from their 30 overs.

The losing draw and six points Leamington picked up from the game means Spa are still undefeated and are still 39 points clear of second placed Penkridge and 53 points clear of third placed Old Elizabethans.

Leamington welcome Brewood to Arlington Avenue on Saturday.