Lindfield beat Crawley Eagles in crucial relegation battle

Lindfield (fielding) v St James (batting). Bowling Shane Wilson-Yelverton. Pic Steve Robards SUS-140408-171439001
Lindfield (fielding) v St James (batting). Bowling Shane Wilson-Yelverton. Pic Steve Robards SUS-140408-171439001

With rain falling throughout the previous night and intermittently in the morning, this crucial relegation battle was always going to be a victim of the weather in one form or another.

However, with credit to the hard work of the home side in drying the wicket at Cherry Lane, the two teams were able to fight for points via a 20/20 encounter.

Winning a crucial toss, Lindfield inserted their fellow strugglers and immediately set about making inroads into the Crawley Eagles batting order. Brothers Matt and Shane Yelverton dealt with the top order taking 2 for 16 and 2 for 9 respectively, whilst Tem Hodson and James Pearce took one apiece. With wickets falling regularly, pressure was buiding on the home side, which took its toll with two run outs via the alert fielding of Phil Weir. Top scorer Jibran Khan with 22 and Usman Vashir with 17 managed to scrape the hosts to just 103 for 8 off their 20 overs.

In reply Lindfield suffered no nerves as they set about the small total. Openers Tem Hodson and Geoffrey Lawrence withstood the Crawley Eagles attack early in the innings, then expanded their game in the latter overs. Hodson dominated the chase with an unbeaten 60 whilst Lawrence supported him well with an intelligent 34 not out. In brightening skies, the visitors easily surpassed the total and claimed the 20 points on offer.

Late order blaster Adam Wright commented, “To be honest, with the skipper on his holidays, a couple of us went to McDonald’s for breakfast not expecting to play. However, fair play to the Eagles for getting the game on. It’s a massive 20 points for us that puts our league destiny in our own hands.”

Mid Sussex Cricket League Division 4: Lindfield 4th XI 131 for 9 dec v Streat & Westmeston 2nd XI 132 for 7: Streat win by 3 wickets

Despite nearly 250 points seperating the teams in the league, this was far from a foregone conclusion on a wet wicket at Great Walstead School.

Batting first, Lindfield battled throughout the afternoon as the rain threatened and it was veteran Malcolm Page (53 not out) who helped them get to 131 for 9.

Streat’s opener Colin Marshall with 48 contributed strongly and set the innings up, but Lindfield’s Nigel Cannon saw things differently and took 5-47 and put the visitors under pressure. As runs dried up, the game looked in the balance, but a useful 28 from Rory Baxter got Streat over the line with just 3 balls to spare.

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