Craddock impressed with South Woodford’s patience in fine Loughton win

PUBLISHED: 14:00 14 August 2018

South Woodford players celebrate after taking a wicket (pic: Graham Hodges).

South Woodford players celebrate after taking a wicket (pic: Graham Hodges).


The visitors stuck to their game plan and eventually dismissed the leaders for 153 and chased it down comfortably

South Woodford made it back-to-back wins in the Essex League Division Two on Saturday with a comprehensive victory away to leaders Loughton and captain Joe Craddock talked up the determination of his team.

After stunning fellow promotion rivals Fives and Heronians the weekend before, the Highfield Road club followed it up with a four-wicket win at the Uplands.

Loughton were all out for 153, but had looked set for a big score on 103-2 with Bilaal Anwar (44) and Umar Choudhry (24) at the crease.

Jake McMullen (5-36) and Bradley Copper (3-32) put the hosts in a spin, however, and South Woodford got home despite a late batting wobble.

Craddock said: “At Loughton it does fly away quickly with the new ball because it is very short straight, so we knew we had to stick to our game plan.

“We did very well to get (Vibhor) Yadav out very quickly – he has got a lot of their runs this year – so we knew once we got him, they could collapse.

“The same type of thing happened the last time we played them where they had a bit of a collapse once we got Yadav and Bilaal (Anwar) out.

“We knew we had to stick in there and hang around and once the spinners come on it was a difficult game.

“Bradley and Jake bowled superbly, we got a couple of wickets and one brought two and we moved on from there.”

South Woodford made a poor start to their chase with Henry Blackwell pinned lbw for four after only two balls.

Homegrown Essex star Nick Browne kept his cool at the top of the order though, as he scored 52 off 67 balls.

Copper supported him with a breezy 26 from number three and 46 by Kasey Harris, a week after scoring 43 against Fives, essentially got South Woodford home, but only after they had collapsed from 152-4 to 152-6.

“The scorecard probably gives Loughton too much credit really because we lost some silly late wicket at the end,” skipper Craddock said.

“We should have chased it quite comfortable at only three or four down and we never looked like being in any sort of trouble, but it is fairly typical of us to try and make it a little bit interesting – we can’t just win comfortable!

“Obviously it is always good to have ‘Browney’ in the side with his experience and the way he takes his time at the start of the innings.

“His shot selection was immaculate and he took away any nervous after we lost Henry quite early.

“Kasey has batted well the last two weeks and the week before Jamie (Carroll) got the headlines the way he smashed it, but Kasey did the simple things really well and has back-to-back scores of forty-odd now.

“We didn’t have a big enough score to chase anyway, but the only thing for Kasey to do now is kick on and get a big, big score. He has been fairly consistent anyway over the last two to four weeks.”

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