Report by Sam Carter
Lancing Rovers (167 in 36.5 overs; J Betts 67; D Joseph 5-18) lost to Sussex Martlets (168-6 in 47.2 overs; J Richardson 78*) by four wickets
A fine team of Martlets gathered in the shadow of Lancing Chapel on a breezy day to take on a young and keen Rovers team, who were as hospitable as ever.
The Rovers prevailed at the toss and decided to have first use of a much improved wicket, and the Martlets took the field numbered ten, until Shomit Dutta had finished his tango with Southern Rail and made it by the third over. A sprightly opening partnership of 76 seemed to set the tone for a batsmen’s game, the openers seeing off a smart spell by Daniel Joseph and tucking into some uncharacteristically generous offerings from Derek Horsham.
Joe Waylett’s off-spin imposed some control and winkled out opener D Sriharan, and young Lloyd Jones of Newick CC took a key wicket getting through Hector Loughton’s defence with some smooth left-arm seam-up. Then the crucial period, as Seaford College schoolmaster Joseph returned at the Pavilion End with an irresistible spell of pace and late movement, scything through the Rovers with a match-winning spell of five wickets in 13 balls either side of lunch. (Joy was unconfined when, despite changes in the catering arrangements, Heinz Salad Cream was still present on the lunch table – some traditions are sacrosanct).
Elegant leg spin from Nikki Chaudhuri complemented the carnage from Joseph’s end, and the Rovers were hustled out for 167.
Largely plain sailing in reply, as a note-perfect 78 not out from Jens Richardson anchored a Martlets chase. The Rovers chipped in with regular wickets, but with some swash from Adam Davies (43) and buckle from Waylett and Akers-Douglas, the Martlets strolled home six down in even time. Man of the Match Daniel Joseph, with five for 18 from ten overs.
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