Patel satisfied with Hainault's half-way house

PUBLISHED: 16:04 16 September 2010 | UPDATED: 16:31 16 September 2010

Hainault & Clayhall captain Yasin Patel

Hainault & Clayhall captain Yasin Patel


Loughton 332-9 beat Hainault & Clayhall 321 by 11 runs.

Loughton 332-9 beat Hainault & Clayhall 321 by 11 runs.

HAINAULT & CLAYHALL captain Yasin Patel had no complaints about his team’s fifth place finish in the SNEL Premier Division, writes Ben Welch.

The Forest Road club finished 95 points behind eventual champions Brentwood and 38 clear of the relegation, but Patel felt the team were let down by a miserable performance in the field and tame bowling attack.

“Where we finished was a fair reflection of how we performed this season,” he said.

“We have been truly below par in the field and we will have to improve dramatically next season if we want to climb up the table.

“We don’t have the fastest or the strongest bowling attack, but our slow bowlers are a match for anyone else in the league.”

The team collected 61 bonus points over the 18 game league season – the fourth highest in the Premier Division – which Patel says owes much to the swashbuckling performances of his batsman.

“I don’t give enough credit to Mousshin Ismail – he’s an exceptional batsman,” said the Hainault & Clayhall skipper.

“If any youngster wanted to learn how to improve they need look no further than watching him at the crease.”

From his 17 appearances this season, Ismail hit an astonishing 854 runs, averaging more than 85 a game – his dexterity with the bat accounted for more than 21 per cent of the team’s runs.

“Irfan Shah (averaged 45.5 runs) is as destructive as anyone and Ashfaq Ahmed (averaged 25.09 runs) is another very solid batsman,” added Patel, who admitted it was up to him to get the best of his players next season.

“We’ve got a talented group here, but there are deficiencies and a rawness that needs ironing out and it’s my job to do that,” he said.

Patel outlined his intentions to develop young players during the winter season and invited budding cricketers to join the club.

“Basil Akram, Atif Zafar and Shoaib Waqar are all excellent young prospects who I really hope push on next year. This club is focused on developing young talent and we would welcome the arrival of players, with potential and ambition,” he said.

On Saturday Hainault & Clayhall finished their season with an 11-run defeat away to Loughton. In a high-scoring game the home side finished 332-9, with Usman Jan leading the way with a massive score of 127. He was ably assisted by opener Michael Gymer (77) and Rob Hayne (60 not out).

Clawing back this opening gambit from Loughton seemed like an insurmountable task, but opening batsman Zafar had designs on a match winning performance as he struck 128.

With Ryan Hurst (53) and Idris Patel (73 not out) providing support, the guests put up a brave fight, but in the end the lower-order couldn’t maintain the run-rate and Hainault & Clayhall were bowled out for 321.

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