Cuckfield boost survival prospects with Brighton & Hove win
Cuckfield CC captain Ben Candfield won the toss and elected to bat in their Premier Division home game against Brighton & Hove CC on Saturday.
Openers Joe Ludlow and Joe Cambridge took the score to 32 before Matt Wood (2-33) trapped Cambridge lbw for 20.
Ludlow (19) followed five overs later after leaving a ball from Luke Bartier (5-61).
Nipun Karunanayake and Chris Mole tried to steady the ship but the Brighton bowlers probed away. Bartier struck the pad of Mole (six), leaving Cuckfield 53-3 after 20 overs.
Brad Gayler (five) was unable to keep out Abhijeet Khilare (2-22), and Harry Clark was bowled just two balls later for a duck by Khilare.
Karunanayake did his best to fend off the Brighton bowlers but was given out lbw for 17.
Cuckfield were now staring down the barrel at 84-6 but captain Candfield and James Anyon decided enough was enough.
Candfield struck the roof of the pavilion twice and Anyon played some lovely shots over the bowler’s head.
After a brilliant 101-run partnership, Candfield hit a full toss down the throat of fine leg, concluding his gutsy knock on 60 which included eight fours and two sixes.
The innings was brought to a close when Anyon was caught off the bowling of Wood for 52. Cuckfield managed to make 195.
Bryce Hounsome looked solid in the reply but just as he looked set on 19, Anyon (1-19) clean bowled him.
Bartier was out for one before Mates (three) was dismissed Cuckfield were on the rampage and Brighton were now struggling at 27-3.
Oliver Collins top-scored for Brighton with 28 but the Brighton innings was wrapped up in the 39th over for just 98. Nick Patterson took the glory, finishing with figures of 7-38 from his simply magnificent spell of seam bowling.
The win leaves Cuckfield in seventh just five points above Middleton CC and four behind Eastbourne CC.
They’ll be hoping to take the momentum in to next week’s trip to Three Bridges CC.
CUCKFIELD CC 2ND XI
Cuckfield CC 2nd XI made the trip south to Steyning CC for a massive game at the top of Division 4 West.
Steyning won the toss and decided to bat on what looked a good pitch. This proved a great decision as Isaac Tidley (66) and Hywel Jones (58) looked comfortable opening the batting.
Brief moments of worry for the Steyning openers saw both being dropped. They made Cuckfield pay as they made an opening stand of 144.
Two quick wickets from Matt Slinger (2-39) removed both openers meaning Steyning had to rebuild.
However, wickets were hard to come by with only Greg Seed (1-46) picking up any other for Cuckfield as David Kennett (51*) and Gary Hunt (21*) lead Steyning to a competitive score of 231-3 off of 45 overs.
Will Rossiter (22) and George Galbraith-Gibbons (20) got Cuckfield off to a flying start, taking advantage of the loose bowling from the Steyning opening bowlers. Though changes to the bowling meant wickets began to fall.
Jones (2-14) removed both Rossiter and Galbraith-Gibbons and Cuckfield were struggling on a deteriorating pitch. Losing wickets at regular intervals, Cuckfield could never pick up any momentum.
Henry Rogers (35) was a mainstay at the crease but with good bowling from Steyning, struggled to push on to the target.
Wickets kept falling and Cuckfield were eventually bowled out for 159 in 40.4 overs. Pick of the Steyning bowlers were Andy Isaacs (3-21) and George Isaacs (2-15).
Cuckfield will be very disappointed with the loss which means they drop down to fourth in the table.
However, they look forward to next week where they will be looking to get back to winning ways at home against Stirlands CC.
CUCKFIELD CC 3RD XI
Cuckfield CC 3rd XI arrived at Smallfield Manor CC for their Division 7 Central clash not really knowing what to expect on a what looked a difficult pitch.
Cuckfield batted first with Alex Hardwicke (26) and Ben Caiden (56) setting the platform for a big score with a good opening partnership.
With the dismissal of Hardwicke, Dom Seed (56) continued to provide able support for Caiden.
However, a mini-collapse meant that Piers Harrison (29) had to steady the ship with Sammy Hart (14*) which enabled Cuckfield to post 229 off their 40 overs.
For Smallfield Manor, Ghulam Moinuddin claimed 3-26 and Zakir Siddiqui 2-25.
Cuckfield were confident that they could defend their total at the break and the opening partnership of Theo Barker (0-20) and Josh Downey (4-13) kept Smallfield in check.
Downey bowled with skill and accuracy once again to enable Cuckfield to squeeze the Smallfield middle order.
Rodney Candfield (2-34) and Jamie Hatt (2-38) continued to apply pressure with wickets falling regularly with only Luke Blackburn (47), Siddiqui (35) and Alex Glossop (23) making double figures.
Tommy Watson (1-14) also picked up a wicket in a nearly disastrous collision with Candfield which ended up being a caught and bowled.
Downey returned to drive the nail into Smallfield’s coffin with his accuracy enabling Cuckfield to restrict Smallfield to 165-9 and take home 30 points.
CUCKFIELD CC 4TH XI
This week saw Cuckfield CC 4th XI host Smallfield Manor CC 2nd XI in a must-win game, with the home side looked to ease the risk of relegation from Division 11 Central (North).
Cuckfield were confident that if it all came together, they could execute the win with the 11 they had.
The weather forecast looked ominous first thing, but upon arrival at the ground it was dry and the covers had kept the wicket in a great state for a game.
Cuckfield won the toss and elected bowl first, hoping the humidity and damp would give them an advantage with some swing and movement off the wicket.
Adam Jull and George Ponsford took advantage of the overhead conditions with the ball and built pressure early on.
Jull bowled superbly getting the ball to jag sharply away from the batsmen and soon a gaggle of slips were in place and the wickets started to tumble, giving him superb figures of 4-32.
One of a plethora of up-and-coming youngsters, Bertie Sheldon, took over from where Jull left off in another fine display taking 3-6 in just six overs and supported the other end by another youngster, Adam Hatt who ended a really focussed spell with figures of 1-24 from his seven overs.
Cuckfield managed to take the last two wickets to bowl Smallfield out for 110 in 36 overs with only Subhash Damera (36) offering significant resistance.
After a short tea break, the game was resumed in glorious sunshine despite the early morning weather report.
Sheldon and James Buckeridge opened the batting and gave Cuckfield a good base on which to build before Buckeridge was trapped lbw for 9.
Caleb Hawkins joined Sheldon at the crease and continued the run chase at a furious rate with Hawkins scoring 40 off just 27 balls.
Sheldon was trapped lbw for 33 in a very mature innings. Hawkins then skied one up which saw the pairs onslaught brought to a close.
With just nine runs left to win the game, Cuckfield suffered a bit of a middle order collapse losing four wickets for just eight runs with Satish Yedida (3-40) and Farzan Akram (2-10) postponing the inevitable.
In strode Ponsford, and he smashed his first ball for four with a beautiful on-drive and Cuckfield won the match earning 30 much needed points.