South East Wales Cricket League

Division 1

Cardiff Gymkhana (201 all out) lost to Chepstow 1sts (205-6) by 4 wickets

OH BROTHER! A week after Chepstow had the Morgan-Huggetts to thank for victory, Sam and Ben Hope-Bell provided another sibling sensation to keep the Firsts’ title challenge on the boil, writes Bob Cypher.

Sam, 19, took SIX wickets for 46 runs and Ben, 16, took 3-17 with two maidens in his eight-over spell during the run-chase.

Home skipper Majid Karim won the toss and decided his men would bat first, but he may have been regretting the decision when both openers fell to Ben with only 42 on the scoreboard.

Sam then took the ball and disposed of the next six batsmen thanks to some fine catches, including two by Mitchell Harris who was standing in for injured skipper Jason Dobbie.

Despite late resistance by Mohammad Umar (27 not out), Gymkhana crumbled with Ben picking up his third wicket and Harris preventing a Hope-Bell whitewash by having Usman Ijaz caught by Ben Kellaway to round it off.

In reply, Sam opened with Ricki Sahabdeen (29), making 44 valuable runs before Harris led his men from the front, ending unbeaten with 63 runs.

Although the remaining wickets went cheaply, Ben Hope-Bell chipped in with a useful 13 and Chepstow passed the target with one delivery short of five overs left.

All-rounder Malith Madurasinghe was delighted with the result and the maximum 20 points from what he described as “a potentially tricky fixture”.

“With Cardiff Gymkhana at 96-6, we were in control, but some good, sensible batting from their lower order took their total to 201.

“But with the ball, it was the Hope-Bell show!

“In our reply, a rapid 79-run opening partnership between Ricky and Sam set a solid foundation and, despite losing a few wickets, a mature captain’s knock from Mitchell saw us home.”