SNEL Premier: Brentwood move clear at top as Wanstead lose
PUBLISHED: 19:48 24 August 2019 | UPDATED: 19:48 24 August 2019
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Brentwood took a big step towards the Shepherd Neame Essex League Premier Division title with derby success at Billericay.
Defeat at Chelmsford for nearest rivals Wanstead leaves Aaron West's men 21 points clear at the top of the table, with only two games remaining.
West chose to bat first after winning the toss but saw his side slip to 15-3 as Robert Rayner made early inroads.
Jack Hebron (47) and Tom Oakley (66) put on 119 for the fourth wicket, though, and James Redwood (39) also made useful runs to lift the total to 218-9.
Rayner (4-34) and Ross Poulton (3-65) shared bowling honours for Billericay, but captain Lee Knight fell to Ben Allison cheaply in reply.
Nathan Khelawon (22) and Darren Ironside (22) were dismissed by Ian Belchamber and Allison (2-33) respectively to leave the hosts 83-3 and wickets continued to fall at regular intervals as Belchamber and Charlie Griffiths combined.
Matthew Bell eventually fell for 51 to Griffiths (3-40), with Belchamber (5-34) helping to seal a 75-run triumph.
Wanstead, meanwhile, had started the day level on points with Brentwood but were sent into the field at Chelmsford.
Bradley De Villiers and Zain Shahzad (2-35) had success with the new ball to reduce the hosts to 34-3, but Dan Hagen dug in and had support from James Clifford in a 60-run stand.
Herons captain Joe Ellis-Grewal (2-64) and Naivedyam Dwivedi (3-42) combined to run through the middle order, but Hagen finished unbeaten on 101 as Chelmsford closed on 220.
And Wanstead were up against it after collapsing to 29-5 in reply, as Liam Kearney (3-12) took three wickets and Matt Dixon and Ben Waring claimed one apiece.
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Dwivedi (36) and Ellis-Grewal steadied the ship with a 64-run stand, but Waring (4-42) and Clifford (2-45) combined to secure a 92-run win for the hosts.
Ellis-Grewal finished unbeaten on 57 from 66 balls, having hit 10 fours.
Last year's champions Hornchurch got the better of Belhus to give themselves a boost ahead of the Essex League Cup final against Brentwood on Monday.
The visitors chose to bat first at Harrow Lodge Park but Merv Westfield struck early with the new ball.
Mehad Khan (2-12) weighed in with a brace to leave Belhus 65-3, as visiting captain Joe Joyce held firm, before Gayan Sirisoma began to turn the screw.
Sirisoma ran through the middle order to finish with 5-30, while Marc Whitlock (2-38) dismissed Joyce 10 runs short of a century as Belhus were all out for 168 in the 60th over.
Ronnie Saunders (27) put on 45 for the first Hornchurch wicket with Jamie Sorrell, but Kieran Scarlioli fell to a first-ball duck.
Captain Billy Gordon (20) and Sorrell (43) departed in quick succession, followed soon after by Michael Bones, to make it 109-5.
But the hosts reached their target with five wickets in hand after Westfield (43 not out) and Jas Bassan (21 not out) shared an unbroken 64-run stand.
Meanwhile, Ilford's relegation was confirmed by an eight-wicket loss to Chingford at Valentines Park.
Mohammad Ahktar (23) top scored as they were skittled for just 102 in 36.1 overs, with Liam Lannen (4-25), Peter McDermott (3-25) and Ben MacGregor (2-29) doing most of the damage.
Captain Theeban Tavarasa took an early wicket in reply, but Essex youngster Feroze Khushi hit 50 off 38 balls in an 85-run stand with Alfie Taylor before falling to Mehtab Malik to take the visitors to the brink of success.