On an overcast Sunday morning in July the Martlets welcomed the Butterflies to Hurstpierpoint College for a new fixture in the calendar. The Butterflies won the toss and elected to field, so Junior Martlet Alex Bushell and Ruairi Keeley went in to open up shop. The Martlets started at a good rate as Bushell punishingly cut anything short to the offside boundary, whilst being supported by Keeley at the other end. The opening pair cruised towards 60 before Keeley became the first to fall as he was bowled by the Butterlfies’ spinner, Hammond. Hector Loughton made his way to the crease and looked in good nick as he swept his second ball to the boundary. However after hitting another well timed four he too was bowled by Hammond.
Enter Pevensey overseas Jano Moller. As the rest of the team in the pavilion argued over who should be next to operate the electric scoreboard Bushell and Moller went to town on the Butterflies attack with a mix of graceful well struck drives and a few crowd pleasing sixes. This continued until the Junior Bushell saw the time, and then played the lunch card as he holed out to long off, ending his excellent innings on 85. Begrudgingly Joe Waylett made his way to the crease to see off the last few overs before lunch. The Butterflies had commendably got in 35 overs in the first session and fielded extremely well.
After lunch the Martlets steadily increased their total, largely from the bat of Moller, without much drama. Waylett (17) played a very good supporting role until he was bowled by Lowe, bringing Rob Bell to the middle. Both Moller and Bell (21) continued to play some fantastic strokes, increasing the rate, meaning Moller (113) quickly reached his century, allowing the Martlets declared on 275-4 from 48 overs.
Andy Cantrell and Matt Stone started the Martlets attack, testing the Butterflies opening pair, which included the Match Manager’s flatmate. Unfortunately the Martlets openers could not draw blood as the Butterflies made their way to 70 without loss, until Giddins attempting another agricultural shot put up a skier which was taken by the only man on the field allowed to take catch this batsmen, his flatmate. With the opening pair broken the Butterflies continued for another 10 overs without loss, until Jano Moller was brought into the attack. The Pevensey overseas showed he was just as capable with the ball as he was with the bat as he took 4 of the Butterflies wickets in quick succession.
As the final 20 overs were signaled the Butterflies needed 133 to win whilst the Martlets needed to take the final 6 wickets, game on. Loughton and Waylett bowled the bulk of the final overs locked in an excellent competition with the Butterflies batsmen. Waylett’s bowling yielded the champagne moment of the day as Hammond smashed the ball in the air to long on. Mark Trubshaw casually seemed to be waving to ball as it sailed over the boundary for a six before he stuck up his right hand and at full reach over his head plucked it out of the air. The excitement was not over as the game seemed to be moving in the Martlets’ favour, with the Butterflies 9 down and a run out chance in the second to last over, but the ball just missed the stumps. Jano Moller was given the last over to see if he could complete his five wicket haul and win the match, but the Butterflies played well and managed to see it out, ending their innings 260-9 and the game in a draw.
It was an extremely enjoyable day of cricket with some excellent performances from both sides. Long may this fixture continue.
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