A whirlwind maiden century in this country by South African all-rounder Lance Humphrey ensured that Langley Mill United march on at the top of the table.
Humphrey hammered 106no, including eight sixes and ten fours, despite going in as late as number seven against local rivals Shipley Park. And he then followed up with four wickets as the Millers romped to a huge 164-run victory to maintain their unbeaten start to the Derbyshire County League, Second Division season.
Even though they were without four players, the hosts amassed a total of 293-7 in their allotted 46 overs after stand-in captain Danny Hanson had won the toss. But it wasn’t before a shaky start in which they stumbled to 48-3 against the bowling of James Parkin (4-84 in 14 overs).
Lewis Pinder (50, seven fours) and Matt Heafield (33, four fours) consolidated the innings, but even at the halfway stage, when the board read 89-3, there were few signs of the fireworks to come. Step forward Humphrey, who strode to the crease when Pinder’s well-crafted contribution ended on 108. Alongside Hanson, who fired 58, including nine boundaries, he wreaked havoc. The pair put on 115 and Humphrey added another 68 with James Heafield (16no) as Langley Mill piled on no fewer than 208 runs in the final 23 overs.
The South African was still in the mood when he took the new ball. With the help of Scott Parkin, he reduced Shipley’s reply to 39-4 and ended up with a return of 4-38 from eight overs. Shipley’s own South African import, Angelo Yiatses, briefly threatened to revive his side, hitting 47 (three sixes and six fours) in a fifth-wicket stand of 52. But that man Humphrey removed him too before the rest of the wickets were claimed in five-over spells by the father-and-son duo of Simon Lacey (3-19) and Josh Lacey (2-27).
The result left the Millers eight points clear of Ilkeston Rutland who, in turn, are 33 ahead of third spot.