Sussex Martlets 225-7 declared (44 overs); C Edwards 83
Goodwood CC 217 (42.3 overs); R Carver 51
After a few years of delightful losses, the match manager baton passed to Johnny Heaven from a long line which includes Sandy Ross, James Lamb, Paddy Jackson, John Ashworth, and Paul Walker.
His first selection triumph was to nick a couple of gun players from Goodwood, along with the opposing captain’s talented son and nephew. Goodwood responded by selecting a fair few Chichester Priory 1st XI players for themselves, so the stage was set yet again for this Stately fixture in the Duke of Richmond’s back garden.
Festival of Speed erections, whilst not exactly flaccid, were only in an early stage of arousal this year so the normal tap-tapping soundtrack was absent.
The Martlets won the toss and elected to bat in a match thankfully restored to a declaration format.
They started solidly. Smith bowled well from the top end (1 for 25), De Lacy more commercially from the bottom (1 for 65). With the score on 42 Lamb (16) was tempted to drive only to find Saturday teammate Carver’s catching too good. The run rate was steady, and Mayne Senior took the next wicket in the 15th over, trapping Chip McArthy (15) lbw with the score on 80 for 2.
The big Martlets innings came from Edwards (aka Mayne nephew). He finished on 83, caught by Smith off Dagubatti.
Heaven came in and tried to up the run rate only to find Carver too good again in his firing-line catching position. Matthew, Ritchie Junior, played his part in a fiery cameo at the end with Ashworth, with Paul Walker yapping away in the pavilion barking orders about backing up and so on.
Bennison and Geffen bowled well for no reward. Pick of the bowlers for Goodwood were Mayne Senior (2 for 47) and Dagubatti (2 for 35). Dagubatti also took a fine catch for Mayne’s second wicket. Martlets came in after 44 overs with 224 for 7.
Conditions had darkened after a sumptuous tea and a couple of quick wickets from the opening pair of Heaven and Digby left Carver and Heyworth in the middle with the score on 12 for 2. They pushed the on to 78 just before drinks (the squash more dilute than the syrupy concoction in the first innings) when Heyworth (39) was out lbw to Walker.
Carver carried on until just after drinks until he was bowled out (51) with the score on 111 for 4. Smith (25), Dagubatti (26) both scored quick runs with some big shots and Bennison (26) and Geffen (30) pushed Goodwood on towards the target.
The last few overs were played in an on-off drizzle. Matt de Lacy was out first ball of the last over leaving the last wicket pair of Mayne and Odell standing and Goodwood needing 8 to win. Mayne’s first delivery slithered by a whisker down the leg side, earning the (Goodwood) umpire a proper death ray stare.
In a limited overs game one supposes it could have been a wide, and it took a longish walk to square leg for the batsman to realise he’d propped his bat handle up against a radiator before coming out and could only deal with its blistering heat by throwing it back towards
Odell thought it wise to then add insult to injury and Mayne was run out with 3 balls to spare after an unfortunate mix-up. It was a banal end to an exciting match, with the Martlets regaining some honour from recent years winning by 7 runs.
Heaven (2 for 41), Digby (2 for 30) and D Smith (2 for 47) were the pick of the Martlets bowlers, though Mayne Junior deserves a mention for a solid spell of legspin.
Thanks to Yolanda Hinton for scoring and Bryan Tomlin for umpiring.
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