First home win puts Priory third

Elliot Hooper continued his sparkling form with the ball as Hastings Priory saw off Roffey. Picture by Simon Newstead
Elliot Hooper continued his sparkling form with the ball as Hastings Priory saw off Roffey. Picture by Simon Newstead

Hastings Priory’s cricketers have moved into the top three on the back of their first home win of the season.

Priory saw off Roffey by six wickets at Horntye Park Sports Complex yesterday (Saturday) and are now within 21 points of second-placed Horsham in the Sussex Premier League.

Elliot Hooper and Dave Lowery were once again the stars of the show as Priory made it back-to-back league wins for the first time this summer, Hooper taking six more wickets with the ball and Lowery scoring an unbeaten 86 with the bat.

Roffey chose to bat in glorious sunshine on winning the toss, but were restricted to 184-9 from their 58 overs. More than half of their runs came from number four Mike Norris (43) and number five Matt Davies (50) as none of the other batsmen scored more than 20.

John Morgan (1-21 off seven overs) and Freddie Hulbert (0-13 off nine overs), who was his usual economical self, kept things tight with the new ball before Hooper came on at first change to take 6-63 from 22 overs. Lowery was the other successful bowler with 2-39 from eight overs.

Teenage Sussex academy starlet Hooper has now claimed 20 wickets in his last four Priory league appearances and 26 for the season. He’s also picked up 17 scalps in six Premier League games for the Sussex Development XI.

Lowery’s 118-ball knock containing eight fours and one six was the cornerstone of Priory’s successful run chase. The Australian number three has now scored 257 runs in four league innings since arriving at the club last month at a remarkable average of 128.5.

Rather like in the previous weekend’s victory away to East Grinstead, several batsmen chipped in around Lowery to help Priory get over the line. Jake Woolley made 21 at the top of the order, Leo Cammish scored 14 at number four, Byron Gould made 35 at number five and Adam Maharaj-Newman was 13 not out at the end.

Priory are back in action this afternoon with a Gray-Nicolls Sussex T20 Cup quarter-final at home to league leaders Preston Nomads. Play is due to start at 3pm.

Standings (played-points): 1 Preston Nomads 11-273, 2 Horsham 11-225, 3 HASTINGS PRIORY 11-204, 4 Cuckfield 12-199, 5 Three Bridges 12-193, 6 East Grinstead 11-184, 7 Brighton & Hove 12-182, 8 Chichester Priory Park 12-179, 9 Roffey 12-174, 10 Worthing 12-164.