Roehampton got off to a fast start, their opening batters
punishing some rusty opening bowling from Merstham openers Asim
Jaffri and Humayoon Nasir, who dropped short too often on a green
track. Jaffri eventually hit his straps to remove the first
Roehampton opener, before first change Charan Msdian took over to
control the Roehampton run rate with some vicious inswing bowling,
picking up a thoroughly deserved 1-28 off 7.2 overs.
Javed and spinner Mohsin Ali joined in the attack, and despite
some hefty blows from ex-England international Saj Mahmood (63,
caught Javed, off Nasir), helped to bowl out Roehampton for 209,
Nicholson taking four catches.
Merstham's response got off to a false start, losing both
openers within the first five overs; however, a stand of 95 between
club stalwarts Javed and Laurie Nicholson (32) set the Magics back
on track. Javed saw it home, dismantling Roehampton's spin and
remaining seam options along the way to a superb, chanceless 115
Merstham will be high on confidence heading in to their second
match of the season at home to Ewell. The bar will be open from 1pm
at Quality Street for any visitors interested in watching some
enthralling club cricket in arguably the most beautiful setting in
The second team suffered a nine wicket defeat. Jason Drewett top
scored with 48 as Merstham were dismissed for 109 by Old Paulines.
Liton Tarofdar took the only wicket in reply.
The third team, promoted last season, also won, having bowled
out Cheam for 64 (Callum Letts 3-25, teenager Max Yates 2-6, Simon
Griffin 2-12, George Corrie 3-5 in 1.3 overs).
The fourth team kicked off their season with a hard-fought win
by 23 runs against Chipstead, Coulsdon & Walcountians.
Having lost the toss, Merstham were put into bat and tight
opening spells from both Jim Orr (0-8) and Oliver Whittenbury
(1-18) ensured they got off to a slow start having reached 30-3
after 16 overs.
Opener Ben Jones still remained unbeaten at the crease on 19
runs, and was joined by John Young as they looked to build a
partnership and push up the scoring rate.
Jones and Young wrestled back the momentum of the game, sharing
a 98-run partnership for the fourth wicket before John Young was
caught at fine leg for an aggressive 57 off 64 balls.
Jones carried his bat through the innings to finish unbeaten on
68 from 110 balls, and along with a brisk 15 not out from Dilhan
Jayamanne ensured Merstham posted a respectable 160-5 from their 40
Merstham were very disciplined in the field with tight opening
spells from Ben Jones (1-23) and Fin Wilshere (1-11) ensuring the
pressure remained on the hosts right from the start.
The pressure soon began to pay off and it was the left arm of
Alex Reeves who finished with excellent figures of 5-24 that
ensured Chipstead lost wickets at regular intervals - and
ultimately could not sustain the run chase despite an aggressive 53
not out from middle order batsmen Paul Vickers.
Chipstead completed their innings on 137/8 having fallen 23 runs
short in what was a very competitive opening match for the