Captain Gordon hails double centurions on historic day at Hornchurch

George Hankins Hornchurch CC

George Hankins hits out for Hornchurch at Harrow Lodge Park - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Hornchurch captain hailed George Hankins for his superb unbeaten double century in their Hamro Foundation Essex League Premier Division win over Shenfield.

Hankins finished 201 not out from 175 balls, with 23 fours and six sixes, to set up a whopping 224-run win over the basement boys at Harrow Lodge Park.

But, remarkably, his efforts were overshadowed by third-teamer Mohammed Azian Zafar, who hit his second double hundred of the season and finished with a club record 262 not out from just 155 deliveries - with 15 sixes and 32 fours.

Mohammed Azian Zafar Hornchurch CC third XI

Mohammed Azian Zafar celebrates his unbeaten 262 for Hornchurch thirds against Shenfield - Credit: Hornchurch CC

"To get two doubles at once was mad," said Gordon.

"He does well in the threes and plays in the twos sometimes.

"But George showed his class as we'd hooed he would this season. It was an unbelievable innings."

Gordon had no hesitation in choosing to bat after winning the toss and, after Frankie Jacobs fell early to Mehad Khan, saw Jamie Sorrell (54) put on 139 with Hankins.

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Ronnie Saunders fell first ball, with Luke Edwards and Jalpesh Vijay following cheaply as William Howard took four catches off Christopher Bridle (4-111) to make it 169-5.

But Adeel Malik chipped in with 28, before Gordon shared an unbroken 114 with Hankins.

"It was nice to win the toss and bat first," he added.

"George got to 150 and I said 'there's just enough time to get a double, I'll get singles and you do what you want' and he kept clearing the boundary!"

George Hankins celebrates after his double hundred for Hornchurch against Shenfield

George Hankins celebrates after his double hundred for Hornchurch against Shenfield - Credit: Hornchurch CC

Hankins took 122 balls to reach three figures, but just 53 more for his second century, with Vijay and Gordon removing the Shenfield openers.

Malik (4-21) and Hankins (4-44) then ran through the rest of the order to seal victory and Gordon said: "It was brilliant to get a big score and we had a lot of runs to play with.

"Jalpesh has been begging for a bowl and he has got good skills, he bowled excellently.

"They had a little partnership and then started blocking everything and you think it's going to be one of those days, without an extra spinner in [Marc] Whitlock.

"But it was nice to bowl them out and get 25 points and away from the relegation places."

Hornchurch sit in sixth place, 51 points clear of the bottom two and 17 off second place with five games left, and visit Chingford on Saturday.

And they host the area final of the ECB National Club T20 the following day, taking on Potters Bar as Horsford meet Richmond.

"I love playing at Chingford, it's a lovely ground and they're a really good side at full strength," said Gordon.

"Muzza [Paul Murray] is back but Whitlock is still on holiday. He's played enough over the years!

"The T20 should be a really good day for the club to make some money behind the bar. You only need one to come off with the bat and you can win a game."