Final ball drama for Read

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IT was all swings and roundabouts as Read edged to victory over Cherry Tree at the weekend.

But captain Warren Eastham made the slide his favoured choice of playground equipment.

The Whalley Road skipper took to the comfort of a nearby park as his side were pushed to the final ball of the game.

With Daniel Lord at the striking end for the away side he required three runs to snatch victory.

However, in search of the boundary from Read professional Stuart Hornby’s delivery, he lifted the ball in to the hands of Peter Haworth.

Eastham said: “It culminated in them needing nine to win from the final over and three from the final ball.

“Luckily Stuart’s bowled a tight over and we’ve come through.

“They pushed us a lot closer than what I expected. I watched the last over from the bottom of the slide in the park.

“I couldn’t handle it. It certainly wasn’t for the faint-hearted.”

An unbeaten 79 from Mohammed Jamal, which included seven fours and six sixes from 33 balls, was the highlight of Read’s innings.

Opener Ben Law fired 32 while Jon Harvey added 27.

“It was a quiet start from ourselves,” Eastham said.

“We lost the toss and went in to bat in a 37-over game. We lost our professional (

“Stuart Hornby) within three balls and we had our backs against the wall at 77-5 until Mohammed Jamal came to the crease and smashed 79 from 33 balls.

“He really took it to their bowling attack and smashed them to all parts.”

Chasing 194 Cherry Tree lost four wickets in quick succession and were there for the taking at 48-4.

“But in similar fashion to Jamal’s spectacular knock, Joe Bolton smashed 85 to pull the visitors back in to contention.

Eastham added: “Ben Law and Jon Harvey put on a stern partnership and tried to consolidate for a period but we only started moving when Mohammed took over.

“In reply we sunk Cherry Tree to 48-4 and we were in the ascendency but then a similar thing happened when Joe Bolton came in to bat for them.

“He put together a very impressive 85 and even though we dropped him once at 50 it was an excellent innings.

“He looked as though he was going to win it for them.”