Chauhan century sets up huge Bedford win as 1st XI maintain strong start

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Manvir Chauhan and Ollie Perks’ huge partnership of 202 set up a crushing win for Bedford Cricket Club’s Sunday 1st XI at the weekend, as they smashed Preston by 136 runs at The Bury.

Batting first on a turgid wicket, Bedford recovered from 1-2 to post 203-2, thanks in large to Manvir Chauhan (103 not out) and Ollie Perks’ unbeaten 73, setting an over par total for the unusually wintery conditions.

Chauhan brought up his fourth century for the club with a huge six over long-on, as Bedford recovered from a dreadful start, and kicked on in the final ten overs, setting up a competitive total for the Hertfordshire side to chase.

Preston CC were never in danger of causing an upset; Shiv Odedra and Jake Brown sharing three wickets apiece as they were skittled for just 67.

Arjun Manku’s side would have been three wins from three, only for rain to scupper last week’s game against Kempston, when their sure fire victory – with just 20 runs to get – was ruined by thunderstorms.

The Saturday 1st XI have had a mixed start, with two of their games succumbing to the wet May weather but they got into the winning column on Saturday with a 4-wicket win at Burton Latimer.

Bowling first, Bedford restricted their Northamptonshire opponents to 186-5, with Odedra picking up another three wickets, while Robbie Dhesi and Luton Stonier were also in the wickets column.

Bedford’s chase was comfortable, with openers Thomas Kelk (49) and Ramkumar Jayaraman (62) putting on a century partnership, before a swashbuckling unbeaten 47 from Odedra put the game to bed.

A flurry of late wickets did nothing to perturb the visitors who will hope to use the win as a springboard to the higher echelons of the Division Five table in the Northamptonshire Cricket League.

The Under 13 County ‘B’ side were in action on Tuesday evening, as they hosted Olney Town at The Bury and won by 9 wickets.

Two wickets apiece for Alex Turner and Karanbir Benipal helped Bedford skittle Olney for just 41 with Alfred Williams and Alex Sawyer easing their side home.

Bedford have two sides in the County Under-13 North division, with the ‘A’ side currently top while the ‘B’ side occupy fourth.

With the persistent rain scuppering the remaining fixtures across the youth setup, Bedford CC – not least Head Groundsman, Ben Dove – will be hoping for dryer weather as the season hots up in June.

Tom Carr is a player and volunteer for Bedford Cricket Club

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