Nono Pongolo claimed the first hat-trick of his cricketing career in Hambledon’s narrow one-wicket win over Bournemouth in Southern Electric division one and admitted: I’m glad we didn’t have DRS.
The South African all-rounder, who notched a century recently, showed he is just as capable with the ball as he wrapped up the Bournemouth innings in speedy fashion to dismiss the final three batsmen in consecutive deliveries.
While the first two victims were bowled and then caught by wicketkeeper John Barrett, the third was rather more debatable as the umpire decided that Robert Pack was out lbw – a decision that may well have been overturned if the TV cameras had been available.
Pongolo said: ‘It was my first hat-trick so it was great to do it.
‘It was a close call but I got it so I will take that any time!
‘I thought it was clipping the top of off and others thought it was missing by a mile!
‘If DRS was in the league, I might have been in trouble.
‘I missed out on one earlier, which I thought was plum so it was good to get one that was 50-50 on a hat-trick.
‘Everyone appeals a bit more when it’s a hat-trick.
‘I just wanted to bowl as straight as possible and when it hit his pads, we all screamed as loud as we could.’
While the Dons excelled with the ball, they were less than convincing with the bat.
Joe Collings-Wells (44) got the off to a decent start but the wickets began to tumble.
And it looked like they were about to lose the game when they were reduced to 134 for nine.
But the final pair – skipper Ian Turner (21 not out) and Barrett (15 not out) – put on an unbroken 33-run partnership to drag their side over the line.
Pongolo said: ‘We seem to keep doing it to ourselves.
‘We bowled well to bowl them out for 166 and were thinking it should be an easy chase.
‘We had a good start and then lost wickets in clusters and it looked like we’d thrown the game away again.
‘Most of us thought we’d gone. Luckily, we had the experience of Turns at the end.’