Seam bowler Abi Sakande, from the Sussex Premier League club Three Bridges, played a crucial part as No 11 batsman when Oxford University snatched an unlikely one-wicket victory over Cambridge in their annual one-dayer at Lord's.
Sakande bowled tightly for 3-28 off his 10 overs as Cambridge were dismissed for 177 three overs short of their full 50-overs allocation, the former Richmond off-spinner Sam Cato taking 4-31, but Oxford looked out for the count in reply. They slumped to 82-7, with Matt Winter, from the Cheshire club Elworth, scoring 52, and they still needed 42 for victory when last man Sakande arrived at the crease.
Ross Haines, a New Zealander playing at Hitchin, turned the match round at No 9 to complete 61 off 44 balls, well supported by Sakande with 15 not out, and Haines won a thrilling match in style with a six off the first ball of the final over. Cambridge’s top scorer was the Weybridge batsman Akbar Ansari, with 52, and Alasdair Pollock, of Barnt Green, was the most successful bowler with 4-29.
The following day at Lord's (21 June) the MCC defeated Hertfordshire by seven wickets in a 40-overs match to celebrate the ground's inaugural game 200 years previously. Jamie Southgate, of Welwyn Garden City, top-scored for Herts with a fluent 56 in a score of 198, but Brian Lara stamped his authority with 56 off 36 balls to settle the issue.
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