By Sam Colvine
Hampton U15C – 68 all out (Sheikh 23, Ketel 21)
Eton College 39 (Lindqvist 3–3, Colvine 3–12)
Hampton’s U15C cricket team completed a surprise victory at Eton with the opposition falling 30 runs short of a target of 69..
After Eton won the toss, Hampton were sent in to bat, an unsettling prospect due to the unpredictable appearance of the pitch. Their suspicions proved correct as a batting mix-up led to a run out, leaving the team at 1-1. The situation worsened when the next batsman edged a zipping ball to backward point, the Eton fielder taking a smart catch.
At this point Hampton needed some determination and resilience to salvage any sort of total from their innings, so when Tom Ketel came in to join opener Aayan Sheikh, the team were willing them to stay in and score.
In the event they went about their monumental task with some comfort, Sheikh using his strength to muscle two sixes over mid wicket and Ketel delicately directing the ball to the boundary on several occasions.
So with scores of 23 from Sheikh and 21 from Ketel, the team raced to 61/2 before both batsmen were out caught. From there, Hampton looked to continue their good work but, unfortunately, the lower order collapsed, bringing the Hampton score to a defendable 68.
Chasing 69, Eton had lots of time to reach Hampton’s total and seemed to want to conserve wickets in order to reach it. However, the fierce opening bowing of Amar Midha and Will Mathers-Jones forced them back into their crease, leaving the batmen as easy targets.
Mathers-Jones struck first when he trapped one of the openers LBW, before Midha bowled the other in a display of raw pace. Although Eton’s number three seemed to be stealthily gathering runs, the wickets were tumbling at the other end.
Mathers-Jones grabbed another scalp, before Will Lindqvist came in and blew the Eton middle order away with a double wicket maiden. Ably supported at the other end by Sam Colvine, Lindqvist bowled another of the home team’s batsmen to leave their chase looking increasingly unlikely.
Yet there was still a chance while their number three remained in, plundering runs while the lower order fell apart around him. Nonetheless, his threat was ended when he was bowled by Colvine, with the leg spinner cleaning up the last two wickets, leaving Eton 30 runs short.
The man of the match award must go to Lindqvist who picked up stunning figures of 3-3 including two maidens.