Mid-Essex League Division One: Jas Hothi thrilled Rainham were crowned champions after several doubts
PUBLISHED: 17:00 12 September 2017
Local club were second for much of the campaign, but eventually leapfrogged Aythorpe Roding when it mattered most!
Rainham captain Jas Hothi admitted there were times when he doubted whether his team could claim the Mid-Essex League Division One title, but was delighted they clinched it earlier this month.
A 95-run victory at home to Burnham Sports on September 2 helped the Spring Farm Park club finish above Aythorpe Roding and seal first spot.
Hothi set out to do that at the beginning of the season and was thrilled after several months of being second, they were able to go top when it really mattered.
“When you are winning every week and still not first you can’t help but think is it ever going to happen for us,” said Rainham’s captain.
“In 2015, when we went up from Division Two, we were runners-up to South Weald, so we said from the start that this year we wanted to be champions and I am so pleased we have managed to do it.
“After winning on August 26 to take over at the top, we were determined not to let the chance slip and we were so focused and did the job with a good team performance.”
Rainham were indebted to the runs of Tom Herbert (40), Garnet Shallow (61) and Jon O’Neill (57), as they scored 228-5 from their 45 overs.
In reply, Abdul Altak (2-12), Rushi Patel (3-34) and Biren Patel (2-3) impressed with the ball to eventually dismiss Burnham for 133.
The victory ensured Hothi’s men claimed the title and so did the third-team after an excellent win at Rankins seconds in Division Eight.
But it was a less successful weekend for the Sunday side, as they lost to Harold Wood in their play-off fixture while Hornchurch Athletic defeated Rainham in the semi-finals of the Essex Foundation Participation T20 Cup by six wickets.
Nevertheless, it couldn’t dampen Hothi’s spirits too much, he added: “We can’t wait for the Premier Division now and it will be our first ever season in the top flight.
“Our third-team also won the title, so they have been promoted and I wanted to congratulate them.
“It was a funny weekend for us as we lost the two semi-final in between sealing the league, but it has been a great season for the club.”
After several years of success, Rainham will be keen to make sure it continues in 2018 when they compete in the Premier Division for the first time in their history.