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Cross aiming for quick recovery after Rowant reverse
GERRARDS Cross won’t want for motivation on Saturday; the league leaders host their main title rivals having just lost to the only other side with realistic hopes of catching them in the last month of the season.
Aston Rowant’s 26-run victory last Saturday has turned Division Two West of the Home Counties League into a three-horse race, and Cross will need to get right back on the horse if they hope to keep their noses in front.
They went to Rowant unbeaten in eight matches, but not even Dan Hampton’s 99 was enough to extend that sequence into double figures.
The hosts batted first and Damian Shirazi (64), Joshua Smith (37) and Andrew Tolson (37 not out) helped them up to 211-5 after 58 overs.
Vikram Banjeree was the pick of the Cross bowlers with figures of 3-49, but the batsmen were unable to back that up as they slipped to 37-3 with Hamza Taj (6), Matt Watson (0) and Brynley Richards (10) all going cheap.
Dan Hampton took the innings by the scruff of the neck with 12 fours and two sixes in a standout knock of 99, but when was caught behind trying to hook Gordon Harris for six the run chase ground to a halt.
And with Wes Morrick (5-58) and Harris (4-66) cleaning up the tale, Cross weren’t even able to shut up shot and take the draw.
With Oxford beating Falkland, the gap between the top two is down to six points ahead of Saturday’s summit meeting.
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