Harris hits out as Walden lift T20 title
PUBLISHED: 16:00 13 September 2018
Saffron Walden were crowned Essex Foundation T20 champions after a comfortable victory over Hornchurch at the County Ground on Sunday.
Put into bat by last year’s winners, Walden openers Ben Harris and Michael Turner had to defend against some strong bowling early on.
But once settled, Harris began to hit the ball to all parts, playing with style and power to reach a quick half-century off 30 balls.
Turner followed suit, reaching his fifty off 41 deliveries, and the pair continued to frustrate the Hornchurch attack.
Harris hit a series of sixes to reach his century off 49 balls and was finally out for 212 after a double-century stand as Walden closed on 212-1.
Joe Barrs and Ryan Deamer opened the bowling in reply, with the latter claiming a wicket in his first over to remove Frankie Jacobs.
Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, with Ali Hancock claiming three scalps as Barrs, Deamer and Ormsby claimed two apiece.
Opener Kevin Shallow proved difficult to remove, hitting 76, before finally being caught on the boundary off Spencer Hill.
Walden wrapped up a fantastic 54-run victory with an over to spare before starting their celebrations.
The success followed a 56-run win over Cambs & Hunts League title rivals Sawston & Babraham at the Anglo American Playing Fields a day earlier.
Walden chose to bat first despite overcast conditions but saw Stephen Larsen trapped lbw for just two.
James Rushford and Giles Ecclestone moved the total to 19-1 after 10 overs, growing in confidence and then going on to record half-centuries.
Ecclestone fell for 52, but Harris (20) and Jack Sneath (24 not out) gave further support to Rushford, who hit three sixes and 18 fours in his superb unbeaten 156 from just 138 balls, in his final match before heading back to Australia.
Walden closed on 263-4, which always looked a daunting task after Barrs struck with his third ball in reply.
Daniel Heath fought on for the visitors with an unbeaten 72, but Barrs (3-36), Jack Ormsby (3-29), Jack Sneath and Deamer all had success as they came up well short on 188-8.
Walden are 12 points behind leaders Foxton with one game left – at home to Foxton on Saturday.