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Hornchurch skipper draws positives

16:27 02 September 2014

Hornchurch captain Roy Smith (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Hornchurch captain Roy Smith (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League

Smith reflects on Orsett stalemate

Hornchurch captain Roy Smith was surprised that his side picked up a first draw of the season in their penultimate Essex League Division Two fixture of the campaign against Orsett on Saturday.

The newly crowned champions batted first, but struggled on a sticky surface and could only make 220-8 from 52 overs.

Jamie Sorrell (38), Ronnie Saunders (40) and Chris Haylett (37) all got in, but Smith felt somebody needed to make a big score to ensure the game took a different trajectory.

“I think it was a hard wicket, we had overnight rain,” he said.

“Our top score was 40, we had people get in and get 30s too, but you need somebody to go on and get an 80 or 100.

“If we had that then we would have probably got around 260 and then Orsett would have had to go for it, so it would have been a completely different game.”

As it was, Orsett were only chasing 221 to win, but they failed to reach that total and surprisingly finished 11 runs short on 210-7.

Smith was puzzled as to why the visitors didn’t “throw the kitchen sink” at the chase, with Orsett now involved in a tight three-way battle for the second promotion spot in Division Two.

He added: “It was one of those games, we were dangling the carrot with the slow bowlers, but they were conservative and didn’t want to go for it.

“I thought they would throw the kitchen sink at it, but they didn’t and I am not really sure why because the draw doesn’t do anything for them.”

Chamikara Mudalige (2-58) and Marc Whitlock (2-57) did the majority of the damage to Orsett’s battling line-up, but they couldn’t get the final three wickets to end Hornchurch’s home campaign with a victory.

Smith praised the latter, though, as his two scalps took him to 30 wickets for the first team this season.

“Marc has done well,” said Smith. “He has been really consistent this season.

“Chamikara and Taqi Abbas have taken the headlines, but Marc has been an unsung hero this season.”

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