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Cricket: Wanstead fully focussed on beating Cannock to make National Club T20 semi-finals

PUBLISHED: 12:00 11 August 2017

Kishen Velani hit a combined 148 in league and cup for Wanstead last weekend (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Kishen Velani hit a combined 148 in league and cup for Wanstead last weekend (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Herons venture north looking to tame Hawks in quarter-final, but will face a former England international

Former England international Kabir Ali has been playing for Cannock this season (pic: Gareth Copley/PA)Former England international Kabir Ali has been playing for Cannock this season (pic: Gareth Copley/PA)

Wanstead skipper Joe Ellis-Grewal says the club are fully focussed on making another national semi-final this weekend when they travel to Cannock & Rugeley Hawks in the last eight of the National Club T20.

Last weekend, the Herons made it through to the final four of the National Club Championship with a four-wicket win at home to High Wycombe.

In the Club Championship, the Overton Drive club are due to visit East Grinstead in the semi-finals on August 27.

Before that, though, is the National T20 quarter-finals for Wanstead this weekend, and Ellis-Grewal is hopeful the team can create more memories in what has been a stunning season to date.

“The National T20 quarter-finals will be an exciting day out for all of the players, but also for those who will be coming to watch us too,” he said.

“It’s great to think of where we are in the competition and how far we’ve come, but we’re looking to carry that on.

“I’m not sure too many other clubs have ever made the semi-finals of the National T20 and National Club Championship in the same year, and that’s what we’re looking to achieve.”

Lining up for Cannock this weekend will be former England Test cricketer Kabir Ali, who also represented his country in 14 One-Day Internationals.

Coming up against a bowler of Ali’s calibre will present the Wanstead batting line-up with an intriguing challenge.

But Ellis-Grewal knows the worst way to approach that test would be fearing Ali’s ability with the ball.

“We know that when we reach the latter stages of the national competitions, we are going to face some talented players.

“We’ve come up against plenty of professionals and former professionals this season, and we’ve got some too.

“It is nice to be coming up against a former Test cricketer, but we have to approach it like he is just another cricketer.”

The weekend also sees Essex Premier Division table toppers Wanstead continue their assault on the title at home to relegation battlers Colchester.

But Ellis-Grewal admits he has been surprised by their visitors’ struggles this season, saying: “Colchester are a good team with good players, so their season has been a bit of a surprise. They won last week, so they will be confident.”

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