Horsham through to Sussex T20 Cup final

DM16130905a.jpg Cricket: Gray-Nichols T20 semi-final, Horsham (batting) v Brighton and Hove. Craig Gallagher. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160724-192108008
DM16130905a.jpg Cricket: Gray-Nichols T20 semi-final, Horsham (batting) v Brighton and Hove. Craig Gallagher. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160724-192108008

Horsham narrowly beat Brighton & Hove by two runs to book themselves a place in the final of the Gray-Nicolls T20 Cup.

In a thrilling finish, Horsham bowler Jonathan Whiting took 4-31, including three wickets and a run out in the final over to win by two runs.

DM16130895a.jpg Cricket: Gray-Nichols T20 semi-final, Horsham (batting) v Brighton and Hove. Tom Johnson. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160724-192055008

DM16130895a.jpg Cricket: Gray-Nichols T20 semi-final, Horsham (batting) v Brighton and Hove. Tom Johnson. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160724-192055008

Brighton had looked out of contention needing 15 runs per over to win, chasing an impressive target of 173-4 from Horsham’s 20-over innings.

The set about reducing the asking-rate from 13 per over with eight overs to go as Alasdair Wilson hit 56 off 42 balls including two sixes.

He shared in an productive fifth-wicket stand of 72 with Curtis Ford (25 off 21 balls) and the momentum continued with Simon Hetherton, who struck 30 off just ten balls, including four enormous sixes.

They put on 33 in short time for the sixth wicket, including 28 runs struck in one over.

Brighton’s fight back made for an exciting finish, as they put themselves within touching distance of victory, needing just ten runs off the last over.

But skipper James Johnson kept faith in Jonathan Whiting to bowl the last over and the decision paid off as four wickets fell as they went in search of victory.

The falling wickets ended Brighton’s chance of winning as by the last ball they still needed three to win but with the numbers nine and 11 batsmen at the crease.

But Michael Munday held on to a good catch to dismiss Waheed Safi and it was all over. Horsham had bowled Brighton out for 171.

Horsham had got off to a great start in their innings with opening batsmen Craig Gallagher (38) and Tom Johnson (37) putting on 82 for the first wicket.

Michael Thornely (51 from 36 balls) maintained the scoring with Tom Haines as they made 31 for the third wicket.

The runs continued throughout with Tom Haines (16) and captain James Johnson (10 not out) all contributing to what proved to be a winning total.

Following their shock defeat of Roffey in the other semi-final, Horsham will face Division 2 leaders Middleton in the final to be played at Sussex County Cricket Ground at Hove on Sunday, August 21.

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