Sun 13 June Merstham Won by 71 runs
We 242/6 in 38 overs (Stef Nayar 53, Amit Shanker 47, Andy Stokes 43, Rakteem Katakey 23, Dan Kite 2/43)
They 171/10 in 36.4 overs (Dan Lamont 36, Vamsi Bhogireddy 35,Rod Harris 26, Praveen Lekhraj 7/46, Hammad Rishad 2/36)
With the 2pm England kick off at the Euros putting an end to Harpsden’s ability to put out eleven players, we were very fortunate to pick up a last-minute fixture at Merstham CC on the edge of the M25 in Surrey. For the golf fans it was nestled in behind the lovely Reigate Hills Golf Club.
Otis Keleher’s much anticipated KCC debut would finally take place after the earlier cancellation of the Reigate Pilgrims game.
Skipper Tim won the toss and had no hesitation in batting. Preetinder and Stef, both batting spectators at Hertford the week before, opened the innings and had to be patient against an excellent opening spell from the young Merstham pair of Bens. Eventually the patience paid off, and there was full value for any shots breaching the infield, with the ball racing to the boundary even up what was a sizeable slope towards the clubhouse.
Stef made an elegant 50 before falling to a sharp catch in slips, but Amit and Andy did not miss a beat and were in batting cruise control going on an uninterrupted spell of 14 boundaries to begin their partnership and bringing KCC to the brink of what was a safe declaration target.
Kelehers, Tim and Otis, slotting in at 7 and 8 had an emotion-laden partnership in the final stages of the innings duly captured by many photos and videos.
Merstham were never in the hunt as Praveen had the entire batting order tangled in a beautifully spun web. Just a week after falling just short of his maiden century, Praveen showed off his all-round cricketing nous by capturing 7 wickets, thankfully helped by his KCC teammates who, surprisingly, did not drop a single catch on the day.