Roffey score 307 to beat Brighton - Horsham humbled by Hastings

There were contrasting fortunes for Roffey CC and Horsham CC on the opening weekend of the Sussex Premier Cricket League season. Martin Read reports on both...

Roffey v Brighton

Sussex Premier League

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Roffey began their bid to regain their league title in the best possible way at Crawley Road with an emphatic 30-point win.

Roffey's Matt Davies / Picture: Steve Robards

Skipper Matt Davies told the County Times: “It was good to bounce back from our cup disappointment with such a convincing victory, especially as we’ve still got room for improvement.”

Electing to bat, Roffey’s 50 came up in the 10th over, openers Theo Rivers and Rohit Jagota going on to score 31 and 45 respectively.

Usman Khan’s 37-ball 54 included five sixes, Davies following up with 58, boosted by 20s from Mike Norris, Josh Fleming and Sajeer Nizam. Simon Hetherton took 3 wickets, and Will Sheffield and Jack Perman two apiece, but despite the excellent wicket and fast outfield, the 308 run target was always going to be a big ask from 50 overs.

Brighton made steady progress, and, although they were never quite up with the scoring rate, at 132-2 at the halfway stage with skipper Bryce Hounsome going well, they were mounting a serious challenge with boundaries flowing. Joshua Andrady contributed 34, but, in the midst of Hounsome’s dismissal by Harnoop Kalsi for 74, Brighton collapsed, the last seven wickets crashing for 15 runs, Kalsi (3-21) and Jas Bassan (3-52) polishing off the innings.

Davies said: “We had to get better after last week, and it was a really nice pitch, and great to get past 300 and win by 144 runs. But, several of our bats got in and didn’t carry on, so after being 188-2 with 20 overs left, I felt we ended up around 40 short of what we should have got. We’re at Bognor on Saturday – that’s a revenge mission for us after they knocked us out of the Sussex T20 Cup.”

Hastings Priory v Horsham

Sussex Premier

Horsham had a troublesome day at Claremont School where hosts Hastings & St Leonards Priory put them in and quickly made inroads.

A partial recovery followed, but with only two players reaching double figures, defending 89 was too much to ask of the visiting bowlers, although they did worry Hastings.

From 10-2 Horsham reached 44 before losing skipper Nick Oxley, who had steadied the ship with a top-scoring 19, but wickets fell steadily, and 36 extras were the highest contributor.

Replying, Hastings were soon 5-2. Wicketkeeper Jake Woolley hit 33, featuring six boundaries, but his departure at 69-5 raised Horsham’s hopes, especially when another wicket fell without addition to the score.

Horsham kept battling, Sam Martin-Jenkins taking 4-28, but Hastings got over the line without further qualms, winning by four wickets with almost 30 overs to spare.

Oxley told the County Times: “The wicket was soft and sloping, neither side quite knowing what to expect, so I wasn’t surprised when Hastings put us in, enabling them to judge their response more easily.

“There wasn’t much in it for the spinners, but Sam M-J bowled well, putting the ball on a length and letting the pitch do the rest. Had we scored another 25 or 30 it might have been another story, and it’ll be good to have a bat on our wicket when we welcome Middleton on Saturday.”