AJ Sports Surrey Championship - Week 4 and T20 review - Kia Oval Skip to main content

May’s final bank holiday weekend meant cricket on three days for some teams. Richard Spiller surveys the highlights of the AJ Sports Surrey Championship Premier Division and cup competitions

Esher v Guildford

A century from Nicholas Smit maintained Esher’s unbeaten record – with a helping hand from Guildford.

A spate of dropped catches early on meant that the visitors’ good work in dismissing Justin Broad (21), Sheridon Gumbs (19) and Krish Patel (24) was undermined by missing opportunities, the most costly being when Smit was put down at mid-off on 22. He went on to make an accomplished 109, adding 170 for the fourth wicket with David Brent (87). By the time they were separated at 251, the horse had truly bolted and was most of the way down the road to Sandown Park, Esher’s decline to 286-8 mattering little. Jono Merlo (3-48) and Olly Birts (4-44) were the most successful bowlers.

Australian all-rounder Merlo (44) gained little support from the top order in reply, the game appearing all but over at 56-5, although Jason Soames’s hard-hit 61 – putting on 75 for the seventh wicket with Joe Morse (27) – at least enabled Guildford to collect some batting points before being dismissed for 218. Paceman Ben Townsend and leg-spinner Freddie Harrison claimed three wickets each.

It was a third win of the season for Esher and sees them sharing pole position with East Molesey, 12 points ahead of the rest.

East Molesey v Normandy

A powerful batting display from East Molesey earned their third victory while condemning Normandy to their first defeat.

Replying to 209-8, Moles cruised in by seven wickets with 16.3 overs in hand, thereby sharing the lead with Esher.

They suffered a blow when Marcus Campopiano was bowled first ball by Prahlad Odedra but Sam Burge maintained his excellent early-season form by blasting eight fours and two sixes in his 86 from 95 balls. He added 80 for the second wicket with Tasmanian Mac Wright (47) and 102 for the third with Cole Campbell (41no). Skipper Nick Stevens (22no) finished the job.

Earlier Normandy had struggled to escape the shackles of a disciplined attack, making most of early help from the pitch with young paceman Toby Porter’s seven overs earning him 1-10. Chris Booth’s 46 was the best score, Sam Wellfare’s 25no from 17 balls finding some freedom in the closing stages.

Wimbledon v Weybridge

Ryan Patel’s century sank winless Weybridge to their third defeat, this time by six wickets.

The left-hander may be out of Surrey’s side currently but defending champions Wimbledon are benefiting. Having been beaten by Normandy, they overcame Sunbury and Saturday’s victory came with 4.2 overs to spare.

Not that it was straightforward – first the hosts had to overcome the considerable barrier of Ben Curran, the former Northamptonshire opener making 101. He added 121 for the third wicket with the highly promising Stuart Van Der Merwe (57) but after that Jacob Gordon’s 28no provided the only substance against an attack featuring Patel (2-44) and county team-mate Dan Moriarty (3-49), ending at 262-7.

Although Weybridge broke through early, removing Ben Coddington for three, their hopes steadily slipped away while Patel – who hit nine fours and five sixes – made 126 and conspired with Kiwi Jack Boyle (64) in a second wicket alliance worth 161 which went a long way to ensuring victory.

Ashtead v Sunbury

Ashtead find themselves bottom of the table after they went down to Sunbury by 23 runs.

For the visitors it was a second success of the season, leaving them third, after winning a low scoring match.

An opening stand worth 80 between Rajan Soni (32) and Devansh Popley (47) suggested it might be a day for batting but after that the best score was Conor Fulton’s 26 in the slide to 174 all out. Harri Aravinthan (2-25), Tom Homes (2-35) and Sam Homes (3-27) did much of the danage.

Surrey’s Ben Geddes (12) was first to go in the reply, which stuttered to 151 all out, none of the Ashtead batsmen managing to make 20. George O’Connor and Matthew Arnold both claimed three wickets while Amar Virdi finished with 1-21 from six overs.

Reigate Priory v Cranleigh

Cranleigh have yet to register a win since their return to the Premier Division but they went agonisingly close at Reigate.

Chasing 270 for victory, a recovery from 6-2 was engineered by Clyde Fortuin (47) and George Ealham (60), followed by Lewis Bedford (51) and Tommy Ealham (44). Bedford’s departure at 234-8 appeared to end Cranleigh’s hopes but George Barlow (29) and Yousef Majid (10) put on 28 until former Somerset leg-spinner Michael Munday trapped Majid in front for 10. And he barely had time to unstrap his pads before seeing Surrey colleague James Taylor (2-50) have Barlow leg-before to finish the match. Richard Stevens finished with 4-40.

Earlier Priory skipper Richie Oliver cracked 82 from 77 balls at the top of the order, James Crosthwaite (54), Alex Ross (37) and Taylor’s 36no inflating the hosts to 269 all out in the final over.

Best of the rest

Just two points separate the top half of Division One, Valley End poking their heads above the throng thanks to a 44-run victory over Old Wimbledonians – a fine effort given their first two matches were abandoned because of weather. Promoted Walton are one point behind, overcoming struggling Spencer by six wickets with Rhythm Bedi’s unbeaten 75 supervising the chase.

Lurking among the three sides just behind are Sutton, now getting into stride after Fabian Cowdrey (113no) and Surrey’s Josh Blake (61) pushed them up to 289-7 against Camberley, dismissing the visitors for 193.

Joining Spencer – who only just missed promotion last year – in the bottom half of the table are Malden Wanderers, who went down to Banstead by one wicket with a ball to spare.

Sunday’s not a fun day

It proved a disappointing time for Surrey Championship clubs in Sunday’s second round of the ECB National Club Championship.

Weybridge’s long trip to Banbury in group 11 proved fruitless, being bowled out for 78 as only two batsmen reached double-figures, Australian Test batsman Will Pucovski’s debut seeing him register a six-ball duck.

An unlikely victory looked possible when the hosts slumped to 31-6, Justin Lamden’s 25no ending those hopes as they won by three wickets.

A day out to Kent brought a disappointment for East Molesey, losing by 75 runs at Bexley in group 15. Chasing 199, the visitors were dismissed for 123 with opener Marcus Campopiano’s 25 the best effort.

Making it a hat-trick of disappointments, Wimbledon suffered a six-wicket reverse against Hayes in group 16. Ben Coddington (46) and James Weir (48) led them to 176-9 but the visitors passed that with the help of Kent’s Alex Blake (40).


Completing a busy weekend came the second and third rounds of the Edwards Cup, the Surrey Championship’s T20 competition.

With the action starting at 10am and three matches played at each of eight venues around the county – just like Vitality Blast finals day at Edgbaston but minus the mascot race et al – the quarter-finals line up as: Wimbledon v Oxted & Limpsfield, Spencer v Cranleigh, Reigate Priory v Dulwich; Old Hamptonians v Weybridge.

Shop Surrey

Show Your Colours

Surrey Events

Driving Events Forward

Pride of Lions

Join The Pride

Greatest XI

Create The Ultimate Team