Harry Dearden batting Glamorgan 2
Match Reports

Javid and Dearden smash record at Stourbridge

SECOND XI CHAMPIONSHIP | Worcestershire CCC v Leicestershire CCC

SCORE | Leicestershire CCC 519 for three declared v Worcestershire CCC 16 for one


REPORT | By Pete Johnson

Stourbridge Cricket Club hosted the SEC between Worcestershire CCC and Leicestershire CCC – and what a day it was for the Foxes, especially Ateeq Javid and Harry Dearden who both posted double-centuries and shared an opening stand of 408.

Leicestershire CCC declared at 519 for three, with Worcestershire 16 for one at stumps, trailing by 503 runs. There were more records tumbling than if a stack of shelves had collapsed in HMV, any Virgin Megastore or a Rasputin Music Shop, or even Ainsley’s for people long in the tooth! (Editor’s note: Other music stores are available). Their partnership was up there with iconic alliances such as Morecombe & Wise, Lennon & McCartney, Batman & Robin, and much closer to home, Smith & Patel.

Stourbridge CC are based at The War Memorial Ground, High Street, Amblecote, Stourbridge. First-class cricket was played at this venue from 1905 until 1981. Stourbridge CC are members of the Birmingham District League. Amblecote is an urban village in the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, and lies north of Stourbridge. Glass making is the main local industry, Stourbridge FC nicknamed The Glassboys, share the War Memorial Ground with Stourbridge CC. Stourbridge is some 13 miles west of Birmingham.

Well known people who have associated with this area are ‘Rocket’ Ronnie O’Sullivan, five times World Snooker Champion, who was born at Wordsley which is just over a mile away. Robert Plant, lead singer of Led Zeppelin was educated locally at King Edward VI Grammar School for Boys in Stourbridge. People of a certain age may remember an Iconic Athena ‘Tennis Girl’ poster from 1976. The young lady in question was Fiona Walker (nee Butler) who was born at Pedmore, two miles away. I hope that has given you a flavour of the place combined with a local history lesson. Amazing what you can pick up from t’internet, and talking to the locals.

This is the fifth match of Leicestershire CCC’s 2019 SEC campaign, they have recorded one victory, and three games have been drawn. All of the drawn games being severely disrupted by the weather. The scorers are positioned some 80 yards to the right of the pavilion, on the ground floor of the skyscraper of a Scorebox. I believe hazard warning lights for low flying aircraft is the next addition to the Scorebox.

Tom Taylor skippered County, won the toss, and chose to bat. His opposite number being Alex Milton. There were some 30 or so spectators present when the players took to the field, the majority of who were sitting on the tiered benches in front of the pavilion. High cloud was the order of the day, with no rain forecast.

Javid and Dearden opened up for County. Well how does one attempt to describe what happened up until the final ball before the tea interval? A tough ask, but hopefully your resident wordsmith can rise to the task! Worcestershire CCC opened their attack with Dillon Pennington and Matt Davis. Pennington a tall athletic individual, with long legs, who generated good pace taking the Football Ground End, Davis operating at the Pavilion End.

The openers posted a 50 partnership after 12.5 overs. Seamers Ed Bragg and Yadvinder Singh being brought into the attack after Pennington and Davis had bowled seven and five overs respectively. If the name Bragg is synonyms with singing, he certainly found Javid and Dearden on song.

The 100 partnership between Javid and Dearden came up at the same time as Dearden’s 50 (10x4) 66b. Dearden taking two runs behind square from spinner Mahaz Ahmed to register his half-century. Javid went to his 50 (73b, 7x4) when he took a single in the cover area from spinner Josh Breed.

Henry ‘Blowers’ Blofeld, who did a first half commentary on yesterday’s game at Newtown Linford CC to celebrate their Centenary when they played a Lashings XI, would have been in his element here. On the far side of the ground, on the road behind the football clubhouse red buses were passing by every 15 minutes or so, on the hour a red and white bus would appear. Blowers would have been in overdrive.

Leicestershire CCC went into lunch at 182-0 from 35. Javid 75*, Dearden 88*. In the second over after lunch Dearden cruised to his 100 (17x4) 123b when a wristy flick off Pennington went through square-leg to the ropes. The total was now on 195-0 from 36.2. The 200 alliance was posted after 39.4 overs.

Dearden was regularly taking boundaries through the cover area, and on the leg-side between mid-wicket and square-leg. Javid was dissecting the field in all conventional areas too. Cricket throws up some alluring statistics, a nugget of useless information that caught my eye was that at 2.24pm precisely the score was 224-0. I have let it be known that I am not at all interested in becoming President of the Ancient Order of Anoraks.

The 250 partnership came up after 49.4 overs. Two balls later Javid went to his 100 (144b, 13x4) when he drilled left arm spinner Josh Haynes through extra cover for two. Dearden took a maximum off Haynes that clattered into the sight screen in front of the pavilion to go to 149. From the last ball of the same over, Dearden went to his 150 (174b, 22x4, 1x6) when he took two runs through extra cover.

Their 300 partnership came up from the last ball of the 57th over. Dearden had now surpassed his previous highest Second XI score of 141 v MCC YC at High Wycombe in 2017. It came up when Dearden deposited seamer Bragg over mid-wicket for a maximum. The ball smashed a window of the Stourbridge FC Clubhouse; quite ironic that they are nick named The Glassboys. A couple of the groundstaff who were sitting alongside the scorebox despatched themselves to the far side of the ground armed with a shovel and dustpan to tidy up the collateral damage caused by the dynamic Dearden (Editor’s note: the invoice is in the post, Harry).

Bragg certainly had nothing to boast about, falling for a three card trick from the Bury Bulldog. The 350 partnership came up after 67.2 overs. Javid the Juggernaut went to his 150 (202b, 18x4) when he paddled spinner Oli Westbury down to the ropes at fine-leg. The same bowler was on the receiving end when Dearden put him through extra cover for two to bring up his 200 (224b, 24x4, 4x6). The total on 377-0 from 71.4 overs and a record in sight.

The 400 partnership came up after 74.5 overs. There were more milestones being passed than put down by the Romans, and also more than you would find on The Long and Winding Road. Worcestershire finally parted Javid and Dearden with the last ball before tea. Dearden 215 (243b, 25x4, 4x6) holed out to Pennington at mid-on off the bowling of Breed. Breed may have picked up the wicket, but Dearden was extremely fertile whilst at the crease.

A monumental partnership of 408 for the first wicket. This eclipsed Leicestershire 2nd XI’s previous highest partnership (which was for the second wicket) of 402 between Matthew Boyce and Josh Cobb in 2011 v Lancashire at Leicester Ivanhoe. It was an absolute privilege to witness the partnership between Javid and Dearden, and my words cannot do it justice.

I should also emphasise that the boundaries at Stourbridge CC were quite lengthy to all areas. Javid and Dearden were like a couple of the most popular gaming machines in a Las Vegas Casino, they ensured everything went in their slot! They were posing more questions of the Worcestershire attack than Laura Kuenssberg could ask a politician in five minutes. Leicestershire went into tea on 408-1 from 77 overs. Javid 173*.

The highest partnership for the first wicket in the SEC is 552 between SA Newman and N Shahid made for Surrey CCC at The Oval in 2003 versus Derbyshire CCC. After Tea Worcestershire CCC took the new ball immediately it was due after 80 overs, Pennington and Davis bowling in tandem. Aadil had joined Javid, and kept the score ticking along with a cameo of 33 (41b, 5x4). Aadil going caught at mid-on by Pennington off Davis. Leicestershire CCC 451-2 from 87.2 overs.

Lewis Hill joined Javid, who went to a superlative double century (23x4) 258b when he drilled Bragg through extra cover for a boundary. Javid and Hill posted a 50 alliance from 39 balls. Hill weighing in with three maximums: two off seamer Singh, and one off Bragg. Hill (32, 30b) holed out to Jack Haynes at long-on off Singh, and Leicestershire CCC declared their innings on 519-3 from 95.2 overs. Javid 207* (264b, 24x4).

Checking my Second XI Annual - namedropping should ensure continued receipt of a free copy - it shows Javid’s highest 2nd XI score as 173* v Durham at Emirates Riverside in 2018. However, I understand that may be in dispute as Teeqy may have a double-hundred up his sleeve from elsewhere. Wicket takers for Worcestershire: Davis 1-63 from 14, Breed 1-44 from nine, and Singh 1-53 from 5.2 overs.

For some reason Singh’s middle name of Chahal shows on the Leicestershire card, but his surname of Singh appears in the Bowling Figures. ‘Sister Suzi’ Drinkwater, the esteemed Worcestershire scorer is aware of that, and is on the case. Worcestershire CCC had a minimum of six overs to bat, Oli Westbury and Tom Fell opening the innings for The Pears against a Leicestershire CCC opening attack of Tom Taylor and Gavin Griffiths. Skipper Taylor no doubt hoping to snooker the opposition with Griffiths and Taylor coming to the table.

Great to see Thomas (Taylor) tanking in to bowl from the Football ground End after a recent injury. Leicestershire CCC got a breakthrough in the third over when Fell (6, 8b) was pinned in front by Taylor.

Nightwatchman Ahmed joined Westbury, and the pair safely took Worcestershire CCC into stumps on 16-1 from 7 overs. Westbury (10*, 24b), Ahmed (0*, 10b). Taylor announcing he is back in the office with figures of 4-4-0-1. Worcestershire CCC trailing by 503 runs. Worcestershire CCC 1 point, Leicestershire CCC 4 points.