Wanstead win title with final day heroics
- Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo
Wanstead & Snaresbrook were crowned Shepherd Neame Essex League Premier Division champions after a final-day win over title rivals Brentwood to the delight of captain Joe Ellis-Grewal.
The Herons sealed a four-wicket win over the reigning champions to end an impressive season with an undefeated record of seven wins and two abandonments in the nine-game campaign.
They bowled Brentwood out for 193 after losing the toss and reached their target with 17 balls to spare to secure the title and top spot with a 16-point cushion.
“It was great to win on Saturday to obviously win what was effectively the Premier League,” said Ellis-Grewal, who led the club to the double in 2016 and National Club Championship a year later.
“I think we played brilliantly all season, we were the only team to go undefeated and it was fully deserved for us to be sitting at the top come the end of the season. To beat Brentwood at their place and come away as champions is brilliant.”
The skipper did admit the result looked more comfortable on paper than it actually was, adding: “It was a real open-flowing game of cricket, a lot of things went against us. We lost the toss, one of our players got caught up so we had to startwith 10 men and a few decisions didn’t go our way.
“But to bowl them out for 193 was great. Batting-wise, a few more decisions went against us so we were starting to think it was going to be one of those days.
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“Kishen Velani (43) batted well up top, but Nav (Naivedyam Dwivedi) to score 54 not out and win us the game as our youngest player was brilliant.
“It was the most high-pressure game of the season, so it was brilliant to see someone contribute once again.”
Wanstead will now be hoping they can retain the league title next year when hopefully a normal full season can return after a shortened campaign in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’ve probably got our most balanced squad that we’ve had in a long time, the three or four youngsters have really come through this year, and had good exposure,” said Ellis-Grewal.
“They’ve been batted up myself by the likes of myself, (Jonathan) Das, Zain (Shahzad) and a few more experienced players so we’re looking forward to next season.
“We want to push for the league title again and also take part in the national competitions that we normally do so well in.”