In-form Samit Patel hits another ton as Langley Mill go third

Samit Patel's third century in as many matches pushed Langley Mill United CC into third place in the Derbyshire County Premier Division after a 110-run victory at Elvaston, writes Andy Heafield.

Samit Patel - threee tons in a row.
Samit Patel - threee tons in a row.

Five years ago, although a division apart, Elvaston and the Mill always seemed destined to be meeting in cup competitions resulting in some tense rivalries and close battles on the pitch.

The last time the clubs had met previously was in the 2017 Marston’s Cup Final with Elvaston winning comfortably; from that final the Millers still have seven players in action for the 1st XI whilst Elvaston had only one in their ranks on Saturday– fast bowler and captain, David Jacobs.

Skipper Danny Hanson finally won a toss and chose to bat.

The last, and only time, the Millers had batted first this season, they scored 281 from 42 overs against Chesterfield and have been averaging almost six runs an over in all innings.

Conditions were wet and windy, not particularly helpful batting conditions and it was Elvaston who struck early on, removing openers Suma Shrestha and Kiegen Wing with the score on 47.

That score could have been worst with Samit Patel being dropped at mid-wicket with the score still under 50.

Samit made the opposition pay dearly, going on to make his third consecutive century for the Millers, scoring 144 to take his season's total to 445 runs and averaging a Nelson 111.

He was ably supported by Akhil Patel (21) putting on 70 for the third wicket and Tom Brandrick (25) adding 95 for the fouth wicket.

Brandrick has nicely settled into his new role at number five in the batting line up with scores of 38 and 25 in his last two innings.

The Millers finished their innings in the last over, all out for 247 with the late order batsmen getting some much-needed playing time in the middle.

With Jack Scott still injured, skipper Hanson opened the bowling with Scott Parkin and spinner Akhil Patel.

Parkin struck first removing opener Chris Taylor for five, caught by Danny Hanson.

Not to be left out, Patel removed the other opener Matt Archer, caught by Matt Heafield to leave Elvaston two wickets down for 18 runs after nine overs.

Third man in Ben Marsden battled well, but when he was out for 27 to leave the score at 71-4, things were looking ominous for the home team. With the bowling not allowing any room for manoeuvre, runs were tight and, despite contributions from Woodburn, Zadran and McMurray, wickets were tumbling and the Elvaston innings ended with them 137 all out from just over 40 overs.

Samit Patel collected another five wickets take his seasons total to 18, Akhil Patel, bowling an impressive spell, took two wickets, and Suman Shrestha, Scott Parkin and Jay Holmes one each.

The club had come in for some criticism from some quarters for signing Samit Patel but the Notts and England player's arrival looks to have win-win written all over it for the club, his fellow players and spectators.

Dan Lacey, Millers chairman and the man responsible for signing Samit Patel, said: “That was another great win and tremendous display from Samit.

“I think sometimes people forget that he’s a Langley lad that was brought through the ranks. His desire to win and perform wearing the shirt rubs off on everyone.

“More pleasing was realising that seven of the players performing week in, week out have been with us since we ‘fired up the engines’ as a mid-table division two team five years ago.

“On a final note, let’s give a little nod to Scott Parkin who’s been opening the bowling this year - a perfect example of a consistent performer in and around the second team who has fully deserved the chance he is taking with both hands”

The Millers third win of the season takes them up a place to fourth with a busy Bank Holiday weekend coming up, at home to Marehay in the League Saturday and in T20 action at home on the Monday in what should be an entertaining day of top level competitive white ball cricket against Sandiacre and Chesterfield.