CRICKET: Leckie’s 54 supreme as Haywards Heath go top

Burgess Hill's Tom Trowbridge in action.'Picture by Steve Robards (SR1516175)
Burgess Hill's Tom Trowbridge in action.'Picture by Steve Robards (SR1516175)

Sussex League Division 3 Brighton 2nds 111 Haywards Heath 115-2

Haywards Heath gained a 30-point victory against Brighton 2nds which lifted them to the top of the table.

Isaac Leckie scored a fast-paced unbeaten 54 to see his side past their target.

Heath lost the toss and were invited to bowl first.

They maintained control through the introduction of Jonny Phelps and Josiah Menzies and both were soon in the wickets.

First Phelps beat the defences of the previously resolute Gabriel Martin (11), and then Menzies found the outside edge of number 3 Dominic Hemblade (21).

Hemblade had started to get the innings going and Brighton captain Fergus Guppy looked to continue this as he went after Menzies with a number of strong shots down the ground.

Guppy (18) had arguably lived a charmed life in his short stay at the crease, and after a number of earlier shouts was adjudged lbw to the bowling of Phelps.

Number 4 Abhjeet Khilare (38) then hit three boundaries off a single Phelps over, bringing about a change that put the game in to fast-forwards as Callum Smith and Ollie Bailey came into the attack.

Smith struck first with two wickets in consecutive balls, and not long after Bailey too was in the wickets and on a hat-trick of his own.

Neither were able to convert, but they did pick up another wicket each as they ripped out the Brighton middle order and tail to return figures of 3 for 10 off 3.3 (Bailey) and 3 for 9 off 3 (Smith), leaving Brighton 111 all out in the 39th over.

The Heath innings started with Jonny Phelps being dropped in the first over and Chris Blunt getting trapped lbw by Matthew Smith, but after that the chase was never in doubt.

The only threat was the dark skies that had interrupted play earlier in the day, but the clouds parted mid-way through the afternoon and Phelps and Leckie batted with good tempo.

Phelps fell for a well-made 43, leaving it to Leckie and number 4 Alex Dodsworth (13*) to see Heath home in the 25th over. Leckie, who had rotated the strike with ease throughout his innings, finished 54*.