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Houghton and Hyam steal the show as Billericay triumph
DAVID Houghton and Barry Hyam were the stars of the show as Billericay beat Old Parkonians by eight wickets.
Overseas player Houghton claimed 8-23 from 10 overs, two of them maidens, as Old Parks were bowled out for 123 in 28.2 overs.
And former Essex man Hyam hit an unbeaten 89 in Billercay’s reply of 124-2 from 26.3 overs.
It ended the Old Boys’ unbeaten start to the season and moved Billericay up to third in the table.
“Gary Hynes pulled up lame after three overs and David took over,” said Billericay skipper Stuart Rutland.
“He bowled exceptionally well and kept the pressure on them, and there was some good fielding and catching.
“Barry showed his class with the bat. Old Parks did not bowl badly, Barry just played extremely well.
“It was a pleasure watching them and, just as importantly, it’s another 20 points.
“After losing our first match to the weather it was important to catch up.
“Taking 20 points off an Old Parks team who had won their previous two matches and now to be 14 points off the leaders, having played a game less, is good.
“But it’s a case of taking each week as it comes and playing the game in front of you, rather than getting too carried away.”
Hermes Solominides put on a promising 52 before becoming New Zealander Houghton’s first victim, before he quickly added Numan Khan (4) and Rizwan Sadiq (3).
Haris Khan (20) offered some resistance before becoming Houghton’s fourth wicket, swiftly followed by Dave Rai (0), James Foley (4) and Rushan Pandya (3).
Dan Harford’s legside catch gave Rutland his only wicket, that of Ejaz Khan (12), before Houghton, who is from Wellington, bowled Kirandeep Bansal for seven.
Paul Walter caught and bowled Ben Bacon for a duck to wrap things up.
Hyam, who is coaching and playing at Billericay, hit an unbeaten 89 although he saw partners Michael Smith (0) and Stuart Hynes (7) both fall to lbw decisions.
But Houghton completed his good day’s work with an unbeaten 19.
Benfleet got their first win of the season with a 52- run win over league new boys Pegasus & Corringham.
It was a game that favoured the bowlers, with Pegs’ skipper Danny Laird taking 6-42 and Benfleet’s Ryan Pryor and Sean Pritchard claiming four-wicket hauls.
Benfleet lost Ray Gipson for a duck to Ian Turnbull, but Chris Webb (16) and Andy Prophet (33) got the scoreboard moving.
Both fell victim to Laird before Paul Tremain (4) and Gavin Blowes gave the captain another two scalps.
Pritchard gave Benfleet a much-needed 53 and James Wilkins hit 15 as four other batsmen went for single-figure scores in the 162 all out total, off 39.2 overs.
Paul Bennett took 2-33 for Pegs but the opener went for a duck as his side replied. Danny Crow (33) got some early runs but two more ducks left Pegasus in trouble.
Laird (13) and David Laurie (18) were the only other batsmen into double figures before the visitors were bowled out for 111 in 34.3 overs.
Pryor (4-29), Pritchard (4-28), stand-in skipper Gareth Steed and David Miles took the wickets.
“Sean batted and bowled superbly and Ryan did well with the ball, but getting Paul Bennett out for a duck was key,” said Benfleet captain Dave Miles.
“I think to get the score we did in the end was impressive and having those runs on the board was crucial.”
“We lost the toss and did not particularly want to field but had them on the rack at 70-7, but their number six (Pritchard) batted well and got it up to 162,” said Laird.
“But once again our batting let us down. We were 4-2 at one point and gave ourselves a mountain to climb which was disappointing because it was a game we should have won.
“We always bowl and field well but the batting lets us down. People are struggling at the minute and we may have to change a few things around,” the captain added.
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