Sussex Martlets (185 all out in 46 overs; W Fazakerley 5-56) lost to Lancing College (186 for six in 39.1 overs) by four wickets
For the Sussex Martlets, England’s exit from the European Championships at the hands of Iceland was merely the second bitter disappointment of that particular Monday afternoon. In a game engineered to finish early, partly for the sake of the football, the strength in depth of Lancing’s cricketers proved the Martlets’ undoing.
The spongy wicket at the College, demonstrating more than occasional uneven bounce, gives batsmen the sense of never truly being established at the crease. So it was that the Martlets innings never exploded into life. Jacob Montgomery – one of two overseas professionals in the side – made 27 at No 2, Toby Pullan 37 in the middle order and there was a vital contribution in the tail from Yodhin Punja (30*), the 17-year-old who made his one-day international debut last year for the UAE against Hong Kong.
Although a slow pitch and sluggish outfield were partly responsible for restricting the Martlets to only 185 in 46 overs, the real damage was done by Will Fazakerley, the College’s opening bowler. Operating at decent pace, Fazakerley took five wickets for 56 across his two seven-over spells – the best delivery probably the yorker to dismiss Marcus Campopiano. Lancing will certainly miss the right-armer in their team next year.
With 18 overs to be bowled in the last hour (starting at 5pm) and the outfield becoming quicker by the minute, the College knew they would get a decent crack at the Martlets total. Punja (9.1-0-27-1) and Burrows (10-1-42-1) bowled tight opening spells and a suicidal run-out reduced the College to 31 for two at tea but it was in the evening session that the defence began to unravel. Creative and sporting use of the team’s resources involved David Twine, the captain, tossing the ball to no fewer than eight different bowlers but only Peter Lamb (4-2-12-0) proved economical. Although wickets fell, the College were always in the hunt and an unbroken seventh-wicket partnership of 69 between Fazakerley (43*) and Matt Clark (43*) put the game to bed.
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