Semi-final: West Herts v Broxbourne
West Herts won the the toss and elected to bat , Salman Mukhtar set the tone by smashing the 1st ball for 4 past backward point. He went on to retire for a well made 31 in quick time , Aaron and Ammaar both got into double figures in supporting roles but then lost out trying to be aggressive. After 3 wickets in quick succession Hassan Jafar stood up and saw the innings to a close with a well made 23 not out . West Herts finished on 133 for 6 at the end of their 20 overs.
Broxbourne got off to the worst possible start with Ammaar Bowling out Elliot on the 2nd ball of their innings. Dylan and Joss then had a 50 run partnership to stabilise the innings, But Once Aaron bowled Joss and Archie in quick succession it was left to Fraser to take charge which he did smashing 4 consecutive 4s in 1 over . The mini revival only lasted 1 more over until Ammaar came back to get Fraser clean bowled. Broxbourne ended up finishing on 116 for 8 off their 20 overs . A special mention for Aryan who got 3 run outs of direct hits in the 19th and 20th overs.
Abbas Bandali (West Herts)
Semi-final: Welwyn Garden City v Radlett
Radlett comfortably beat Welwyn in the first semi-final of the Herts Junior League U11 Finals.
Winning the toss and electing to field, Radlett soon applied pressure through the ever accurate bowling of skipper Krishan Lakhani and Harry Bee. These spin twins bowled 8 very economical overs between them taking 2 wickets each with Welwyn struggling, making just 18-4 after 8 overs with the top order all back in the pavilion. James Underwood started the recovery with a solid 28 until brilliantly caught by Yadhav Birundhapan. Welwyn rallied to post 76-6 from their 20 overs despite further accurate bowling from Edward Browne demonstrating the strength & depth of the Radlett bowling attack.
The Radlett openers, Harry Bee and James Steven-Jennings soon put this score into context with a chancless 50 partnership. James made an excellent 30 before retiring, Harry a solid 20 not out. It was left for Koby Cornwell to strike the winning runs as Radlett reached the target without the loss of any wickets after just 8.3 overs.
Robert Bee (Radlett)
Final: West Herts v Radlett
Radlett again won the toss and elected to field. As in the earlier semi-final, Radlett spinners Krishan Lakhani and Harry Bee each bowled a tight 4 overs, although the West Herts batsman progressed without many alarms, save one or two dropped catches as the long hot day started to affect the Radlett fielders. Salman and Arron posted 47 for the first wicket until Salman was undone by the pace of Koby Cornwell with an excellent short ball. Amaar and Aryan continued the impressive batting display as West Herts posted a competitive 123-1 from their 20 overs. The score could have been higher but for fine bowling at the death from Joe Kenny, Sam Stein and Yadav Birundhapan.
The Radlett reply started badly with the early wicket of Harry Bee, excellently caught high above his head by Salman off the bowling of the impressive Amaar. However, the boys kept batting with aggressive intent as Koby Cornwell struck his first 2 balls to the boundary before being outfoxed by Salman. James Steven-Jennings continuing his form from the semi-final was joined at the crease by Rhys Kanbi as the pair put on 62 in 6 overs to bring Radlett ahead of the required rate as their fans started to believe they could win. As James retired for another crucial 30 and Rhys was caught and bowled by stand out bowler Salman for 28, the Radlett chase started to falter.
Zak Hancock then took control with a superb innings, remaining calm when all around him on both sides started to panic. Zak enjoyed crucial but brief partnerships with Krishan Lakhani, Yash Patel and Sam Stein, all of whom ran hard and kept up with the required rate. With Radlett 7 wickets down, Zak stroked the winning boundary to confirm victory with 2 overs to spare finishing 20 not out. It was fitting at the end that Zak was joined by the ever-present Edward Browne to secure the victory and this Radlett team their third successive Herts Junior League title following previous successes at U9 and U10 age groups.
It was an excellent final, played in a competitive but friendly spirit. Both teams are fine ambassadors for junior cricket.
Robert Bee (Radlett)