CAPTAIN Alexei Kervezee hit a century as Halesowen defeated Tamworth last Saturday.

Following the introduction of a new playing condition in the 55 over format which states that the toss will be uncontested and deemed to have been won by the away side unless their captain wishes to bat first, Halesowen took up the option and inserted Tamworth, writes Richard Cox.

However on a day when most of the Worcestershire players who are registered with clubs in the league took the field, it was former New Road favourite Kervezee that took centre stage for Halesowen.

Their six-wicket success saw Jason Jakeman hit 51 for Tamworth but the highlight of the home side’s innings of 224-9 was a hard-hit 70 from Jordan Brooks, who is currently one of the longest hitters on the professional golf circuit.

He faced 61 balls, clubbed five sixes and four fours and took Tamworth from 97 for six to 208 for eight before he was dismissed. Masharraf Shazad took 3-62 but the best individual performance of the game came from Halesowen skipper Kervezee who was unbeaten on 115 from 112 balls.

He was joined at the wicket by Wes Griffiths (43 not out) at 117 for four and they eased Halesowen to victory with more than 10 overs remaining and a mid table spot with leaders Wolverhampton coming to town on Saturday.

A young Hales second XI kept Himbleton to 211 in their 50 overs thanks to Scott Jones (3-10) and leg spinner Archie Reeves (3-56). In reply Joe Tromans (30), Tom Williams (47) set the innings off to a decent start but the impetus for victory needed one of the middle order to bat through to over come Himbleton which proved beyond them.

The third team acquitted themselves well against a strong Five Ways Old Edwardians team at Hopwood. Chasing 303 to win they were indebted to Alex Jordan (100*) for his mature innings as they fell 100 runs short and lie at the foot of the Division 4 table. The fourth team lost to Malvern by five wickets despite Dan Hines’s 98 not out and Vinny O’Grady’s 51 but remain in the top four.

Kervezee said: "It was a very good win today and two very good team performances in the last two weeks. One or two of our batsmen got decent deliveries and one got a pretty poor umpiring decision. But apart from that it was great to see Wes Griffiths play a mature knock in the circumstances and the key now is for us to go on and be consistent against Wolves next week. For my part I thoroughly enjoyed getting my first hundred for the club and hope it will be the shape of things to come. A pleasing day all round."

The firsts welcome Wolverhampton for a noon start this Saturday.

The seconds go to Ombersley, the thirds host Bromsgrove and the fourths are at Cookhill.