Burgess Hill won this top-of-the table clash with local rivals Haywards Heath by an emphatic six wickets to remain top of division three.
Hill kept the pressure on as the dependable Blunt and Ollie Bailey looked to rebuild. Zain Patel replaced Strange (1-41) and immediately found control and some turn.
Bailey having scored just three from thirty-five deliveries fell to Simpson caught by Willett. Scoring at less than three an over, Heath were up against it and the Hill bowlers were in no mood to relax. Blunt was adjudged LBW to Patel for a well-made 41 and two quick wickets then fell to Simpson - Charlie Maine bowled and Tim Upchurch smartly caught at slip by Tom Trowbridge. Matt Jones joined O’Keefe and batted positively (23) before O’Keefe was bowled and became Simpson’s fifth victim. Patel (2-24) snared Josiah Menzies LBW and Jones was last man out in the 50th over, caught and bowled by Simpson, who finished with the impressive figures of 14.3 overs, 6-35. Hill’s target was 138 off 50 overs.
Hill started positively from the first over as openers Tom Trowbridge and Jack Simpson scored at six an over to bring up the fifty partnership in just the eighth over. Skipper Smith changed the bowling frequently and Bailey had Trowbridge (14) caught by O’Keefe off his first delivery which Trowbridge will have been disappointed not to have dispatched to the boundary .
Phelps was settling into a good line and length, but Simpson was in aggressive mood, finding the boundary frequently with just the odd alarm. Kirk Proto and Ian Simpson both departed cheaply to Phelps caught by Blunt and Smith respectively but Patel was in no mood to let the chase stall, playing confidently in defence and attack.
With 35 still needed Simpson fell to Phelps caught and bowled for a fine 65 to add to his six wickets. With Phelps in good form it still looked a long way home for Hill but Ben Hopkins (25 not out) joined Patel (30 not out) and the pair knocked off the runs with ease, Hopkins depositing Phelps for two large sixes with the second winning the game.
It was a fine win for Hill who gained revenge for their defeat to Heath in the first game of the season and all credit to Heath for their generosity in defeat. It remains a very tight division and both teams will look to be in the mix at the end of the season.
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