It seems Lindfield are determined to stride one step forward and then take two steps back this season with another poor performance following last week’s win against Crawley Eagles.
Hosting Pagham, the bottom club in the league, Lindfield were looking to extend the slim cushion they have above the relegation places, but failed to capitalise after making a good start. Winning the toss and electing to field, the home side made an immediate impact. Opening bowlers James Pearce (3 for 34) and Tem Hodson (2 for 34) removed the top order as Pagham found themselves 40 for 5.
The introduction of Matt Yelverton made matters worse for the visitors as he took 5 for 3 off 7 overs and effectively finished any productive resistance from the Pagham batting line up. Only Fredrick Burgess with 18 and Thomas Kent (16) showed any composure as visiting team were bowled out for 101 in just 32 overs.
Whereas in their last game Lindfield set about a small total with ease, this week they looked nervy and unsure in whether to stick or twist. Several batsmen made double figures but failed to build on making encouraging starts. Geoffrey Lawrence at the top of the order made a useful 30, but few could stay with him for any significant amount of time, as wickets tumbled regularly. Peter Cotterill (3 for 40) and the excellent Ernaga Dissangge (6 for 24) ripped the heart out of the Lindfield batting order as they went from 44 for 2 to 68 for 9. The hosts were swiftly put out of their misery, as they were bowled for just 81 in the 21st over.
However, with Crawley Eagles losing to Middleton, Lindfield find themselves 14 points clear of relegation with a game to play. A win next week at Ifield will guarantee survival in the second division.
Sussex Premier Cricket League - 2nd XI Division 1
Brighton & Hove 2nd XI 122 for 5 v Lindfield 2nd XI 121 all out: Brighton & Hove win by 5 wickets
Already relegated Lindfield 2nd XI put up a spirited display against a decent Brighton & Hove team at the Nevill Ground thanks to 13 year old Freddie Longley. Having spent the week with the Sussex Under 15 squad which won the National Championship, Longley accumulated 58 runs off 76 balls, to be the conerstone of the visitors 122 all out. Supported by wicket-keeper and animal lover Matt O’Brien, the two over came a poor start which saw Lindfield 39 for 4 following an initial burst from opening bowler Kieran Buck (3 for 6). By the time O’Brien departed, he had helped steer the side to 121 for 6 and in a handy position to push on. However, Gabriel Martin (5 for 11) blew away the tail with only one run being added for the last 4 wickets.
In return, Brighton & Hove struggled to get to grips with the Lindfield attack. Following his batting heroics, Longley opened the bowling and took 2 for 22 off his 7 overs, to cap a fine all-round display. Fellow opener Chris Maynard also picked up 2 for 22 to have the hosts struggling at 41 for 3, but a run-a-ball half century from Abhijeet Khilare proved the difference. When he was caught by Maynard the home side were close enough to their target, and with support from Christian Miller (37 nout out) they got over the line in just 25 overs.
Mid-Sussex Cricket League - Division 2
Lindfield 3rd XI 224 for 7 v Cowden 1st XI 172 for 8: Match drawn
A welcome maiden century from Lindfield strong man Rob Minter was the highlight of this closely fought contest in which the hosts nearly nicked a positive result at the end. Batting first, the home side started positively with opener Tom Storer hitting 32 and Ruhul Choudhury supporting with a useful 29.
A flurry of wickets from Andy Hancock (3 for 57) temporarily halted Lindfield’s progress, but brought Minter to the stage. He quickly rolled up his sleeves and set about the Cowden attack, muscling good length balls to the leg side and taking on the infield with shots over the top. Finding support from youngster Danny Bulgin (26) the pair took Lindfield over the 200 mark and towards a declaration of 224 for 7 off just 43 overs. First change bowler Jon Etheridge chipped in with 3 for 83 amongst the carnage.
In reply, ten man Cowden initially found the total daunting with wickets falling regularly. Skipper Gordon Hancock (27) and keeper Brian Reddick (22) provided the most resistance whilst the bowlers were on top. Peter Booth’s off-breaks proved the pick of the attack with 4 for 31. With 14 overs left, Cowden were 113 for 6 and tottering towards defeat, however an excellent 43 from Ross Dyer batting at 9 stemmed the Lindfield charge and saw the visitors bat to the required 47 overs with a wicket to spare.
The draw means Lindfield’s relegation battle is in the their own hands going into the final week of the league season.
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