There were mixed fortunes for our local West Sussex Invitation League sides - but top-flight outfit Eastergate got back to winning ways at home to Felbridge.
Here are the reports from games involving Eastergate, Aldwick, West Wittering and Bognor thirds.
Eastergate v Feldbridge
Invitation League division one
After their first loss of the season, Eastergate were back on home turf – and back to winning ways with a 64-run victory over Felbridge & Sunnyside.
Felbridge decided to have a bowl after winning the toss. Eastergate skipper Jack Stannard opened up with Nick Smith, who got Eastergate off to a fast start before being bowled for 19.
Justin Poyser scored 17 before Chris Brittain was out for one to leave the hosts 71-3.
Stannard was bowled for 38 by the spin of Jack Williams and Eastergate fell to 90-4. Nathan Green and Andrew Smith cemented the innings in the middle order for Eastergate and put on 58 for the fifth wicket.
Green was eventually out for 36 and Smith made 39. Eastergate pushed the total up to 189-9 off 49 overs.
The pitch was getting more difficult to bat on and Nick Smith took two early wickets including dangerous skipper Aaron Willsher to leave Felbridge 24-2.
Taking the pace off the ball worked as Jamie Murphy and Rijo Raju bowled tightly. Murphy took regular wickets and ended with 4-32.
At 80-7 Felbridge knew they couldn’t win so decided to go for the draw.
Eventually Nick Smith took two more wickets, and with three overs to go, Tom Stannard got the crucial last wicket to give Eastergate a hard-earned 30 points. Felbridge ended on 125 all out.
Eastergate, up to fourth, travel to table-toppers Broadwater this weekend.
Broadbridge Heath v Aldwick
Aldwick have not had the rub of the green at times this season, but - rooted to the bottom of the table with only three games to go – they will have to produce something special and pray for good fortune if they are to avoid relegation.
Skipper Ollie Smith lost another toss and Heath skipper Jordan Ruff knew straight away he had gained a favorable advantage by inserting the visitors following a heavy downpour.
Batting on the sodden wicket was difficult and it showed apart from the gallant efforts of open Alex Cooper (52), who almost carried his bat with a defiant half-century.
Despite taking 43.4 overs to bowl out Aldwick, captain Ruff used only three bowlers who were as economical (21 maidens) as they were probing. After Cooper, only Adam Robinson (12) made double figures as Sam MacDonald, Jeff Dane and Tom Endicott bowled out Aldwick for 106.
To their credit, Aldwick did manage to get five wickets (John Young 4-14 & Ian Horner 1-25) before Heath achieved an inevitable victory after 23 overs.
Openers Andy Skates (34) and Craig Skilton (28) set up the victory before the mini-collapse ensured that Heath did not have everything their own way.
Aldwick must show some of the fighting spirit that got them into division two in the first place or risk dropping down.
Aldwick v Eastergate
WSIL T20 Plate
Aldwick sailed into the quarter-final of the League T20 thanks to a solid performance over Eastergate.
The visitors posted a reasonable 137-5 from their 20 overs with runs mainly coming from Jack Stannard (43), Andy Smith (34) and Albert White (32) and the wickets were evenly shared between Adam Robinson (1-39), Josh Sargeant (1-16), Dan Robinson (1-26) and Harry Rosser (1-20).
Consistent batting from Alex Cooper (34), Ryan Purvis (33), Adam Robinson (26) and Dan Robinson (23*) ensured an Aldwick victory in the 19th over. Jamie Murphy (2-25) took all the wickets.
West Wittering v Clymping
Clymping won the toss and elected to bat. Pick of the batsman were Alan Budd (54) and Paddy Horne (25) with some big sixes which started to deter Wittering’s bowlers.
However, a quick flurry of wickets saw Clymping innings collapse from 72-2 after 14 overs to 148 all out off 31.4 overs.
James Staight (4-37), Andy Priest (2-8) and Carl Tupper (2-30) took the majority of wickets with Matt Jewiss and Harry Staight taking one apiece. Harry Staight took three catches.
Wittering began the chase with confidence, Mark Taylor (14) and Jack Allsobook (16) starting well, but they fell in quick succession and Wittering were on the back foot.
But Gareth Lendrum scored a match-winning knock of 57*, helped by Jake Irwin-Brown (39). Both hit massive sixes as Wittering chased down Clymping’s total after a rocky start to claim all 30 points on offer.
Aldwick 2nd v Wisborough Green 2nd
Aldwick’s bowlers restricted Wisborough Green to 165 all out to give their batsmen a chance – but the visitors’ bowlers stuck to the task in hand and Aldwick fell 35 runs short.
Chasing 166 for victory, Aldwick lost opener Chris Redman for a duck and his opening partner Mark Lester (4) was forced to retire injured early on.
The home side were soon in trouble at 60-5 mainly because of the efforts of Jack Sizzey-Carter (3-15). A rearguard action from Grant Wilson (29) and Lara Johnson (11) closely followed by Andy Burtenshaw (18) gave the home side a sniff of victory but Frank Vickery (2-15) took late wickets.
Earlier, Aldwick skipper Harry Rosser (3-28) had the Green’s opening line-up in trouble and they were soon 28-3.
The skipper’s other bowlers found it hard and allowed Rick Etheridge (68) and Daniel Dominque (26) to steer their side towards a competitive total.
A plucky spell from Andy Burtenshaw (4-43) and wickets from Liam Hicks (2-20) stopped the visitors posting too big a score but their efforts proved fruitless as Aldwick recorded another defeat.
West Wittering 2nd v Rustington 2nd
On a gloomy afternoon in Rustington, Wittering elected to bowl. Matt Jewiss and Joe Sissons took three wickets between them in their opening spells.
Jack Harte was brought on to abolish the middle order. He did so by bowling a excellent line and making the ball swing both ways. His reward was four wickets.
Skipper Mark Brien almost matched Harte’s success by taking three well-deserved wickets. Jewiss came back on to sweep up the tail and the hosts were all out for 95.
Wittering went into bat full of confidence. Steve Feazey opened with Iain Lendrum and both looked comfortable, striking the ball cleanly.
But their wickets fell and the classic Wittering Wobble ensued. Youngsters Charlie Caddy and Alex Fitzgerald stepped up to the crease at 54 for six.
Both played mature innings with Fitzgerald hitting 17 not out and Caddy 22 not out and gave Wittering the edge by four wickets.
Arundel 3rd v Bognor 3rd
Invitation League div ten west
At picturesque Arundel, Bognor built on last week’s win against Littlehampton.
Being invited to field after losing the toss didn’t deter Bognor as young Taylor Jaycocks (2-18) gave the visitors a bright start.
Support came from all the bowling unit who chipped away at the Arundel line-up, including jolly veteran Jon Whitewood (2-40) and the spritely Babs Ahmed with his under-used spin bowling grabbing 3- 15. The hosts being dismissed for 109.
Bognor began their chase in a hurry as Ahmed continued his recent good run with the bat finding the boundary at regular intervals.
With support from Bognor skipper John Hooker (32no), Ahmed finished on 72 not out as Bognor won by ten wickets.
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