Egerton Park victory charge falls short at Hinckley

Egerton Park's overseas signing Zaheer Hussain receives his cap before making his debut last week EMN-150505-103758002

Egerton Park's overseas signing Zaheer Hussain receives his cap before making his debut last week EMN-150505-103758002

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Overseas signing Zaheer Hussain hit a century in only his second match as Park fell one wicket short of a maximum-point victory on Saturday.

Park captain Nick Watchorn lost his third straight toss and the visitors were invited to bat first on a cold, overcast day at Hinckley.

At 80-4, the Melton side looked in a spot of bother, but a fifth wicket stand of 116 between Zaheer Hussain and Charlie Madden put Park in an excellent position to post a competitive total.

When Madden fell for 69, off 54 balls, the pair had taken the score on to 196 with nine overs to go.

Kamal Panchal came to the crease with licence to have a go and his unbeaten 38 off 26 balls, including four sixes, put the visitors well on top. He shared another sizeable stand of 94 with Hussain who treated the everyone watching to a batting masterclass.

The Australian’s chance-less 115 not out was watchful to begin with and gathered momentum throughout, his last 50 runs coming off 21 balls. The 126-ball innings included five sixes and 10 fours.

After the break, Hinckley made the worst possible start when their opening batsman was run out first ball.

Good middle order batting showed why the home side have gone 27 games unbeaten as they got a foothold in the match.

But the introduction of Hussain and Glover forced the breakthrough and wickets began to fall regularly.

Just before the drinks break, the home captain requested the spare ball was changed, and the umpire agreed. The ball had given ample swing to the Park bowlers, but the replacement offered no help.

With life for the batsman made significantly easier, and despite the occasional breakthrough, Park ran out of overs and fell one wicket short of the win and a 30-point haul. Hinckley’s innings petered out on 222-9 from their 45 overs.

Egerton Park: R. Haffenden 9, R. Bailey 13, Z. Hussain 115*, T. Glover 12, S. Rose 11, C. Madden 69, K. Panchal 38*, Extras 23. Total: 290-5.

Hinckley: 222-9.

Bowling: K. Panchal 9-0-51-2; J. Barnard 7-1-40-0; N. Watchorn 3-0-36-0; Z. Hussain 12-0-46-3; T. Glover 9-0-40-2; T. Webster 5-2-6-1.