Skipper Chadhani delighted as Eastnor see off Harborne and Kiwi Test bowler Butler (From Hereford Times)
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Skipper Chadhani delighted as Eastnor see off Harborne and Kiwi Test bowler Butler
4:30pm Thursday 31st May 2012 in Sport
Eastnor skipper Clive Chadhani was delighted with his side’s progress after a comprehensive Birmingham League Division Two success against Harborne at Clenchers Mill Lane.
Eastnor have now won twice in three matches and bounced back from a disappointing one-wicket loss at Water Orton the previous week.
“It was a very good win for us on the back of our loss at Water Orton, particularly as Harborne are a good side,” said Chadhani.
The visitors included New Zealand Test opening bowler Ian Butler but failed to post a big enough score to give the paceman sufficient opportunity. They won the toss and elected to bat on a good Eastnor pitch.
“The track looked a belter and there certainly were not too many gremlins in it and there was not much turn, although the bounce was a bit low,” said Chadhani.
Harborne, however, struggled to make much of an impression as Mohammed Adeel and, particularly, Shahid Ahmed got to work.
Shahid, who had taken six wickets at Water Orton the previous week, was again in form with a five-wicket haul, returning 5-24 from 14 accurate overs.
“Shahid got the wickets but Adeel bowled with good line and length, too,” said Chadhani.
“It was a case of chipping away. Shahid is in great form and has started the season very well. He bowls a good length and keeps at it; it is just a question of keeping his health.”
A couple of sharp catches at slip by Atiq Ur Rehman, once from Shahid and one from Adeel, brought a fine early start as Harborne dipped to 3-2.
But although Butler (13) and Nirrushan Raveenthiraraja staged a brief rally, Harborne swiftly subsided to 40-6.
And when Ali Khan became Atiq’s third victim at slip, caught for 27 from Jabran Khalid’s first ball, the resistance was already almost over.
A late rally from Kieran Iyer (17 not out) lifted the score to 84 before a second catch of the day from Josh Emery rounded off the innings as Jabran finished with 3-9 from 5.4 overs, leaving Chadhani to pay tribute to the fielding.
“Josh Emery, in particular, is a fantastic fielder but others are fielding really well,” he said. “We felt that 84 was a below par total.”
Nonetheless, with Harborne having defended a total of 98 the previous week against Brewood, when Butler returned the remarkable figures of 9-30, the result was not yet a foregone conclusion when Jabran and Arashad Hussain opened the Eastnor reply.
“Butler is a wily and experienced character and he did for ‘Bobby’ Jabran with one which came back in,” said Chadhani.
“But Faisal stepped and, although he technically not the best, played very well.”
The loss of Arshad and Jabran was followed by the important wicket of Atiq who fell to Butler for 11.
But skipper Chadhani came in and assisted Faisal (35no) in guiding his side to victory with three boundaries in his undefeated 13.
“We got to our target in under 19 overs but defending a low score Harborne knew that they had to take wickets so with attacking field-settings we knew that we could be positive,” said Chadhani.
“It’s a good start but there is a lot of work yet to be done. We are working hard on our discipline and camaraderie as well as training individually — if you look after your body it will look after you.
“I believe that teams this year will pick up points from each other but there will come a time when teams become more defensive. It’s good to get some wins in the bag.”