Bexhill up for survival fight

Jamie Wicks bowls for Bexhill during last weekend's defeat to Preston Nomads. Picture by STEVE HUNNISETT (dh32503a)
Jamie Wicks bowls for Bexhill during last weekend's defeat to Preston Nomads. Picture by STEVE HUNNISETT (dh32503a)

Bexhill’s position in the Sussex Premier League relegation scrap improved slightly despite losing last weekend.

Second-bottom Bexhill have moved two points closer to a Worthing side which occupies the final safe spot of third-bottom and the gap between the teams is now just 10 with four matches remaining.

While Bexhill picked up a creditable 12 points against new leaders Preston Nomads, Worthing were skittled for just 57 away to East Grinstead with Sussex professional Lewis Hatchett taking 9-17.

Bottom-of-the-table Eastbourne, who included former Test players Mohammad Akram and Alan Wells, won away to Chichester Priory Park, however, and are now 21 points behind Bexhill with a game in hand.

Bexhill captain Malcolm Johnson said: “We were banking on Worthing to lose against East Grinstead; we were pretty pleased about that. Eastbourne got a win, but I think it’s a bit poor having to sign an ex-professional (Akram) to help you get out of the relegation zone.

“Virtually every team has got a professional. You take that professional out, they’ve just got club cricketers. If we had a professional, I’m sure we would do just as well as any other team. We could’ve been up there.”

An away fixture against fourth-placed Roffey is next up for Bexhill tomorrow (Saturday) and Johnson says the 30-run defeat Bexhill suffered in June’s reverse fixture, when they collapsed from 126-3 to 173 all out, still rankles.

“We’re still enjoying our cricket and we’ve done alright,” continued Johnson. “If we can keep close to Worthing and Brighton, and contain Eastbourne, we should be alright.”

With in-form spinner Jamie Bristow-Diamond still away, Bexhill could well field an unchanged side. See today’s Bexhill Observer for the full article.