The South East clouds finally cleared on Saturday and new Blackheath recruit Craig Wood continued his fine early season form, despite a 3 week break since his last knock.
After Chris Willetts lost the toss, Wood's patient approach and tight technique saw him weather a testing opening burst which accounted for England U19's recently announced player of the year Daniel Bell-Drummond as early as the first over. Wood was joined by Blackheath's new overseas player Mohammad Ashraful and together the pair expertly neutralised one of the Kent League's best bowling attacks.
The introduction of spin saw both batsmen lift the shackles momentarily but shortly before drinks former Bangladesh captain Ashraful sliced a cut to backward point.
Having watched a stand of over 80, Jamal Patterson got stuck on the crease to a brisk delivery from former England seamer Amjad Khan and was soon following Ashraful back to the changing rooms. Warren Lee joined them shortly after mistiming a pull which was caught at square leg.
This only brought Faisal Shahid to the crease and his proficiency at rotating the strike meant the scoreboard ticked over and the now well-set Wood got the lion's share of the strike. 120 runs later Wood had brought up his maiden Kent League hundred on debut - an impressive follow up to the 50 and 100 he had registered at Henley and Reigate Priory in pre-season.
Shortly before a tiring Wood chipped out to the deep mid-wicket boundary Shahid brought up a no less impressive 50. His under a run-a-ball innings was remarkable considering the difficulty of the pitch and a series of dismissive slog-sweeps off some of the Kent League's most potent bowlers were quickly compiling a match winning total.
Shahid was joined by Dipayan Paul for the last few overs of the Blackheath innings and both continued the Club's momentum, the total eventually finishing on 236-5 - the highest Premier League score of the day.
Lordswood's innings began with an early loss as Blackheath's had but whereas Wood and Ashraful had demonstrated an application which would deny the home side further wickets, the Medway club's batsman had no answer for the pace and movement of Blackheath's opening pair of Jahid Ahmed and Warren Lee.
Ahmed's slippery pace and exaggerated movement was causing Lordswood's left handers particular difficulty but Lee, fresh from his CB40 Unicorn's debut, made sure the pressure on the home batters was relentless.
As the ball aged, spin was introduced in the form of MCC Young Cricketer Dipayan Paul and the ever-green James Hands. The Lordswood batsman were already showing signs that they would be happy to escape this game with a losing draw and so it was pleasing that the pair, and latterly the off-spin of Mohammad Ashraful, were able to force 4 further wickets on what was now an extremely docile pitch.
Despite Chris Willetts offering several opportunities for Lordswood to enter the contest with extremely attacking fields, the home side declined and the game petered out into a draw. Considering Lordswood's slim contribution to the second half of the game it was fitting that they should hand Blackheath an extra bowling point and be denied a batting point of their own in the last over of the game.
All in all this was a solid first league outing for the Club with some excellent signs. Lordswood finished 3rd in 2011 and it has traditionally been a joyless destination for Blackheath.
The Club now turn their attentions to Bromley at home next weekend.