Premier Division

Ninety-four from Arfan Akram was enough to secure a 33-run win for Wanstead and Snaresbrook at Chingford on Saturday, a result which keeps the third-placed side well in the title race.

Currently eight points off second, Wanstead were made to work hard for the win with their batting not up to its usual high standard.

Put into bat after winning the toss, Wanstead were at eight for one after Zain Shahzad (0) was run out by Andrew MacGregor.

Saurav Prabhakar (8) and Hassan Chowdhury (16) were then removed to leave the away side on 87 for three, but their one constant was Akram.

A masterful knock of 94 runs from 103 deliveries included 16 fours, and as the middle order failed to fire his contribution became increasingly influential.

Skipper Joe Ellis-Grewal chipped in with 40 from 44 balls to nudge Wanstead up to 236 for nine.

Chingford had been going along nicely with Alfie Taylor (43) and Rahul Patel (16) opening up. However, a flurry of wickets fell after Patel was dismissed, and from 45 for one the hosts soon found themselves at 78 for five.

Mohammed Fayyaz Khan (three for 23) and Shahzad (three for 62) had plenty of joy with the ball and were backed up by Mohammed Ali Syed Zaidi (two for 31) and Ellis-Grewal (two for 39) in making light work of the Chingford line-up.

Ben MacGregor added an unbeaten 40 from 46 balls lower in the order but the hosts were all out for 203 to hand Wanstead victory.

South Woodford suffered another blow in their battle to avoid the drop as they went down by 37 runs at Harold Wood.

The home side had elected to make first use of the wicket and looked likely to build an imposing lead as Hamza Ahmed (124) and Raihan Hussain (32) got into their stride with the bat.

And despite losing three wickets in relatively quick succession, as Garry Neicho (two for 22) and Dane Watson (two for 50) struck, Wood were able to put up 244 for eight, even with Richard Browne snaring three for 55 to clean up the tail.

Watson then hit 65 from just 64 balls to get the Woodford reply off to a quick start but after he fell at 108 for two, the wickets started to stack up.

Michael Browne contributed just ten whilst batting at three and Harry Neicho (26) fared only slightly better.

Kishan Vadher (38) was the next highest scorer in the South Woodford side and the visitors struggled to put runs on the board with any regularity before they eventually ran out of time on 207 for nine.

Loughton are still not clear of relegation threat after a poor performance with both bat and ball condemned them to a three-wicket loss at Brentwood.

The away side opted to bat first after winning the toss but were made to regret that choice when Ubaid Ur Rehman Kiani (9) was snared with 29 on the board. Matthew Schubert (31) enjoyed a more profitable spell at the crease but was one of only three batsmen to post double figures.

Rishi Patel was another, and his 46 from 62 balls made him the side’s top scorer. But those contributions alone were only enough to see Loughton up to a paltry total of 116 all out.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Loughton batsman Daniel Gymer. Picture: Dave LovedayLoughton batsman Daniel Gymer. Picture: Dave Loveday

Knowing they would have to bowl exceptionally to secure the win, the away side did well to snare seven wickets before they were eventually beaten; Husnan Kazmi (four for 33) starring, whilst Patel managed a return of two for nine.

Brentwood did enough to seal the points, hitting 117 with 30.5 overs gone.

Buckhurst Hill are glancing over their shoulder nervously after an eight-wicket home defeat by Chelmsford.

Third from bottom, Hill are now level on points with South Woodford, who are below them in the final relegation spot and also on 115 points.

Hill batted first after winning the toss and the openers enjoyed mixed success.

Mohib Shah went for a duck off three balls but Russell Beckett stuck around considerably longer, posting 59 from 110 deliveries.

Willem Scholtz (27), Darren Ironside (24) and Will Stoner (23) all chipped in but were unable to boost the Buckhurst score considerably; the home side eventually finishing on 181 all out inside 50 overs.

There was cause for optimism early in the Chelmsford reply as opener Nicholas Bailey (8) was removed by Sam Sullivan (one for 27). However, the away side made light work of reaching the required total from there, cantering to 182 for two after just 28.5 overs.

Division One

Woodford Wells’ season is petering out and a seven-wicket loss at home to fellow mid-table side Harlow should be cause for a little concern.

Wells were put into bat after losing the toss and began in the fashion in which they continued, losing Gareth James (26) and Brenton Thompson (7)for meagre scores.

Fourth man in, Joe Johnson, offered some hope with 37 but it was not until a flurry of late runs that they were even able to reach 170 for nine.

Harlow sealed the win after 33.4 overs, reaching 171 with seven wickets still in hand after James had accounted for both openers.

Division Two

Top-of-the-league Fives and Heronians laid down a marker by thrashing Stanford Le Hope by 203 runs.

Fives were not stunning with the bat and shared the runs around with Terry Ballard (41) and Gary Edwards (69) making sound knocks at the top of the order.

Further down, Ben Britton (43) and Ali Raza (85) got in on the act to help the home side post a total of 299 all out from 48.4 overs.

There was no single bowler who stole the show either, but the win was secured thanks to tight spells from Selvam Ramasamy (three for 12), Gamindu Kanishka (two for 11) and Jonny Kay (two for 15).

Stanford were all out for a paltry 96, allowing Fives to enhance their lead at the summit of the division.

Division Three

Woodford Green had Anthony Palmer’s ton to thank for their six-wicket win at home to Basildon & Pitsea.

It was the visitors who elected to bat first after winning the toss and they put up 232 all out with Asad Ijaz (two for 33) returning the best figures with the ball for the hosts.

And after a spluttering start, Palmer hit a big score of 107 not out to inspire Woodford Green to victory from number five, with Matthew Field (64 not out) alongside him steering the hosts to a total of 236 for four.

West Essex picked up a big win in their battle against the drop, overcoming Benfleet by 54 runs on the road.

Visitors West Essex won the toss and elected to bat first, making 204 from 43.4 overs.

And they successfully defended that score by restricting the home side to just 150.

Salim Mithani hit 67 but it was not enough for Epping to avoid defeat at Walthamstow, going down by six-wickets.

Defeat leaves Epping glancing over their shoulder; a place and 15 points clear of the drop.

East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Epping's Arron Halls plays a stroke down the wicket. Picture: Dave LovedayEpping's Arron Halls plays a stroke down the wicket. Picture: Dave Loveday

Mithani’s knock came at number eight at a time when the away side looked to be in a spot of bother and helped his side post 218 before they were removed in 37.5 overs.

Manan Patel (two for 45) returned the best figures for Epping but his efforts alone could not prevent the home side hitting 219 for four.

Oakfield Parkonians cruised to a seven-wicket win at Old Brentwoods with Faisal Bhatti and Vikram Handa starring for Parks.

Chasing 242 all out, Oakfield Parkonians made a strong start to their reply with Bhatti hammering his way to 88.

Handa, at three, then chipped in with a further 83 as Parks reached 245 for three without any dramas.