Match manager Darryl Rebbetts reports:
“England won the toss of the first of two twenty twenty matches and chose to bat first on an excellent looking wicket at Arundel. They showed they meant business right from the off hitting Darryl Rebbetts for a straight six over mid off! After being 45-0 off 3 overs, the Martlets began their fight back by taking the pace off in favour of spin with Mike Murray and Harnoop Kalsi pegging back the incredible start made by England. Murray and Kalsi only went for 37 off their 8 overs with Murray taking the two important wickets of openers Hammond (50) and Thomas (21). England continued to turn over the strike excellently as well as hitting boundaries regularly off Trubshaw and Waylett and the returning Rebbetts before Rebbetts took two wickets at the death. England ended their innings on a very impressive 176-5.
The Sussex Martlets opened the batting with Nayee and Reed and went along at a run a ball before the scheduled rain came to put a halt on the innings. After lunch and a frustrating hour’s delay due to rain we managed to get back out there to resume the run chase. We lost three quick wickets to the very impressive left arm off spin of Fred Bridges who finished with figures of 3 for 21 off 4 overs. Reed scored an impressive 44 off 43 balls. Rebbetts and Martin then went about chasing the huge England total, but with regular wickets being lost, the Martlets couldn’t bring down the rising run rate. Martin was run out for a 16 ball 24, Moller for a 2 ball 6 and Rebbetts finished 31 not out off 20 balls which brought the innings to a close at 149-6. Losing by 27 runs. A good platform for the second game.
The Martlets chose to bat first this time and opened with Rebbetts and Trubshaw (the not out batsmen of the previous game). Trubshaw was immediately into his stride, reprising his century against the ECB Disability XI from a couple of years ago, hitting a rapid 37 off 14 balls! This gave the Martlets the platform to post a competitive total. However, after losing Ben Davies for 1, it was left to Rebbetts and Moller to rebuild. However, the England bowling was incredibly accurate and Martlets lost regular wickets again with scores of 55 off 43 balls from Rebbetts and 24 off 29 from Harnoop Kalsi, the other highlight of the innings. Martlets finished on 158-6, a score of which we were very confident of defending with a strong spin attack.
With the new opening attack of Nayee and Moller, Martlets began well, restricting them to a much more reasonable start. Murray came on and immediately picked up the big wicket of Hammond for 16. The rate kept creeping up to towards 9 with some more excellent economical bowling from Kalsi and Murray again, going for only a combined 50 off their 8 overs. An excellent return from both bowlers throughout the day. Waylett kept on persisting and with the rate climbing, England went for their shots and Waylett was rewarded with two wickets of Thomas (53 off 45 balls) and Goodwin (20). Trubshaw also was rewarded with 2 wickets in his first over (one off a long hop and the other a full toss) leaving England needing 39 off three overs. Waylett conceded 13 off his next leaving a tense finish on the cards at Arundel Castle which was now bathed in sunlight and a decent crowd looking for a big international win. However, Hugo Hammond had other ideas, striking Trubshaw for 3 sixes and 2 fours from the penultimate over to give England the win with an over to spare.
A tough result to take for the Martlets who felt they were in control until the 19th over. A brilliant end to a wonderful day’s cricket. I can safely say that both sides are already looking forward to another fixture next year. Some real quality shown and an excellent insight for the Martlets’ side into English cricket at it’s very best. With the new full time staff for the England Disability Cricket team, it is great to see some real talent being developed by some excellent coaching. We at the Martlets hope to see some real success from them soon.”
After the game, Johnny Barclay, director of cricket at Arundel Castle, wrote to say:
“Quick note to say what a good day it was yesterday and a big thank you to the Martlets for playing so well and providing such good opposition for the England team. So many smiling faces throughout the day and at the end. I so like that.”