03:32PM, Tuesday 02 August 2022
Maidenhead Titans are in fine form heading into this week's title-decider with Reading's Blue Sox after comprehensively overcoming the Bracknell Scorchers 25-6 last week.
To keep pace with the Blue Sox - and have the chance of potentially overhauling them for the title - the Titans had no margin for error against tough opponents on paper. And a scoreless first innings did little to settle their nerves, however, those early fears were extinguished by a magnificent display of attack and defence.
At times this season the Titans' defence has been unplayable, and that was once again the case against the Scorchers.
The Titans chalked up five unanswered runs in the second innings and led 11-0 at the half-way point at the end of the fourth innings.
With Kai Benaim pitching, the Scorchers had failed to score a run, and a huge nine-run fifth innings from the Titans obliterated the hosts' chances.
The Scorchers managed six runs in the fifth innings to give the scoreline a degree of respectability, but Joe White hit a four-run grand slam in the sixth to help seal a 25-6 victory.
The defence, who played almost a faultless game but for one innings, was led by the agile Fernando Pinto at first base.
Other results this week mean the Titans are guaranteed a top two finish, and a win against the Blue Sox this week will see them clinch the title on the final day. Lose and they'll end the season as runners-up.
Drivers are being warned to expect severe delays following the earlier closure of the M25 in both directions between Heathrow and the M4 exit.