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So much so that Irani called upon a certain Graham Gooch to open the batting for the County side.The huge Upminster Park crowd were then treated to a master-class by Gooch as he made 163 and with help from Irani himself, Essex racked up a massive total which proved to much for Upminster, who fell to a 100 run defeat.After a two year break (the County had no Beneficiaries in 200) a game was staged in 2009, this time in aid of the Graham Gooch Essex Cricket Academy.The match was played on the August Bank Holiday Monday, and the largest crowd in the history of the event witnessed the match in glorious sunshine.The Essex Beneficiary was James Foster, a man who had played in many of the previous encounters.Foster was dismissed cheaply but Michael Comber went on to make 114 not out for the County side, and although Akbar Jabar replied with a fine century for Upminster, Essex won the contest by 8 runs.Elliott Timoti and Shabhaz Butt put a fine partnership together that briefly threatened to win the game for Upminster, but 3 wickets from Matt Salisbury meant a 28 run victory for Essex.
Upminster made it three wins in three years in 2002 as they overcame an Essex XI captained by Mark Ilott for his Benefit Year.
Hussain himself made 72, and local lad Stephen Peters made 41, before Ronnie Irani entertained the large crowd with a sparkling knock of 107 as Essex made 302 from their 35 overs.
In reply, Upminster’s overseas star, and future Zimbabwe test player Dion Ebrahim made 38, and youngster Kevin Mc Neela made an unbeaten 31, but Upminster came up short as they finished on 250-9.
Essex and England spinner Peter Such (right) had his Benefit Year in 2001 and on 30th August bought his County side to Upminster Park.
Local lad Peters was again in the runs, making 68, as the Essex XI racked up 237-7 in their 35 overs.