Cuckfield are second in the Premier Division after beating Preston Noamds for only the second time ever at the Spen Cama Memorial Ground.
Captain Hayward won another toss making it seven out of eight and, given the week’s terrible weather, elected to bowl first on a drying pitch at Fulking. Richard Dexter (21) and Dan Phillips (16) got Nomads off to an aggressive start in tricky batting conditions with 30 off the first six overs. Thirty for no wicket soon became 75-5 though as Cuckfield rising star, Tom Weston, bowled Phillips and Dexter took at pot shot at Silk, well caught by George Galbraith-Gibbons.
Dominic Shepherd clearly hadn’t been watching as he holed out to the same fielder in Silk’s next over.
A sharp stumping by up and coming young keeper Ben John off Josh Hayward accounted for Ollie Gatting and the Nomads skipper Jeremy Green was run out with a direct hit by Hayward. The leg-spin of Ben Candfield (2-41) then accounted for Carl Simon and Kashif Ibrahim while Stuart Faith played the anchor role digging in to hold up one end. Faith scored a solid 40 from 102 balls before he was bowled by Hayward.
Late order Cameos by James McKemey (23) and Owen Kernan (24) helped Nomads to a very competitive 172-9 from 58 overs. Hayward ended the innings with 3/39 from his 22 overs.
Jordan Silk (25) and James Mitchinson (16) got Cuckfield off to a good start but batting was hard work on a surface which remained difficult throughout the game.
The openers both fell with the score on 41, Silk caught behind off Carl Simon for the second time this season and Mitch bowled by Kashif Ibrahim. Weston joined Greg Wisdom and the pair worked hard putting on 33 before Wisdom (10) was bowled by Rigg. This brought Chris Mole to the crease at 74 for 3 and he and Weston proceeded to show their class with a determined exhibition of well judged batting, picking off 1s and 2s while dispatching anything loose. The return of Simon to the attack saw Weston (60) sky one ending a crucial partnership of 75. Cuckfield still needed 24 runs to win from 4.2 overs and Mole (41) cut loose with some aggressive shots, giving Nomads a glimmer of hope as Faith clattered his stumps.
A characterisically tight over from Simon left Cuckfield needing 13 from the last two overs. In his first game of the season, Joe Cambridge (14) proceeded to smash Faith for a six and two fours to relieve the palpable tension and give Cuckfield a five wicket victory, only their second ever at the Spen Cama Memorial Ground.
Cuckfield 3rd XI v Bolney 1st XI
Cuckfield won the toss and elected to bowl first. The visitors’ innings was a mixture of ducks and 20s as they batted out their 47 overs for a dogged 130. Tom Hughes (26), James Flower (29), Dean Hamilton (20) and Suraj Weerarathne (22*) featured in the 20s as Chris Osborne (4/59) and Matt Slinger (4/29) took regular wickets.
The Cuckfield chase got off to a good start with Will Rossiter (22) and Iain Pringle (19), but after they were both caught off Weerarathne and Hughes respectively, it was the reliable Piers Harrison (46*) who steered the home side to victory by 5 wickets in the 25th over. Tom Hughes took 3/45 for Bolney.
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