It was a tough weekend for our top two Sussex League cricket teams, with Middleton slipping to defeat against last year’s champions Roffey and Pagham having to settle for a draw at Findon.
Here are all the details...
Middleton v Roffey
Sussex Premier League
Middleton found last season’s Premier League champions Roffey too strong for them at Sea Lane.
Having been put in, Middleton got off to the sort of start they haven’t managed in recent weeks.
Openers Sean Heather and Beck Hemingway put on a partnership of 75 before Heather was caught with his score on 30. Hemingway went on to score his second 50 in successive weeks before being bowled.
The Middleton batsmen found it hard-going for the rest of the afternoon.
They were pegged back by good bowling, particularly from Aussie overseas player Ben Manenti, bowling 19 overs and taking four for 69, then they lost wickets as they tried to push on to gain batting points, losing their last five wickets for 24 runs and being dismissed for 174.
It was a score captain Heather felt at the interval was probably 70 runs under par.
A second-wicket partnership of exactly 100 between Theo Rivers and Mike Norris set the foundation for Roffey. Rivers fell for 56 but Norris saw his side home, ending 76 not out, with Roffey reaching their target just five wickets down.
Findon v Pagham
Sussex division two
Pagham won the toss and decided to bowl first against Findon, but were soon made to wonder whether that was a good decision.
At the first drinks break after 17 overs, Findon were 87 for one with Bradley Bridson out for 42.
Curtis Howell (88) continued to maintain the scoring rate of around five runs per over with the second wicket falling at 154 in the 31st over.
At this stage it looked likely that Findon would be in a position to declare at around 45 overs but two timely run-outs and an accurate spell of spin bowling from Sean Rutter of 20 overs for 72 meant Findon went the full distance of 53 overs before reaching 244 for four.
In reply Pagham made a poor start, losing Stuart Hanks and Ryan Barratt with only 16 on the board.
A partnership of 111 ensued between Joe Turner (61) and Eranga (74) before the latter was caught behind off Toby Kingsbury.
Stuart Rutter gambled by putting Nabib Rahman in next for some quick runs. The gamble paid off handsomely with Rehman getting his 50 off only 32 balls.
Having reached 217 for three, Pagham looked the likely winners but a regular fall of wickets saw the strike rate fall.
At the end Pagham were eight runs short of the win in a very exciting game. James Iago was the pick of Findons bowlers finishing with four for 78.
The somewhat-skittish posints system meant Findon got 13 points and all Pagham’s positive attitude rewarded them with was five points.
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