Bexhill pull off important win in battle against the drop

Neil Blatchly was a key contributor with bat and ball as Bexhill Cricket Club beat Ansty at The Polegrove on Saturday.
Neil Blatchly was a key contributor with bat and ball as Bexhill Cricket Club beat Ansty at The Polegrove on Saturday.

Bexhill Cricket Club’s first team picked up another important home victory in its battle to avoid relegation.

Bexhill triumphed by 42 runs at home to Ansty on Saturday in a Sussex Cricket League Division Two second-bottom versus fourth-bottom encounter at The Polegrove.

Bexhill totalled 180-9 declared from 50.4 overs after losing the toss and being asked to bat, with Cameron Burgon top-scoring for the second successive weekend. Eight of the nine wickets to fall, incidentally, were caught and the other was a stumping.

Neil Blatchly and Danul Dassanayake put on 39 for the first wicket until the latter fell for 16 off 17 balls. Bexhill then drifted from 60-1 to 78-5 as Shawn Johnson departed for 11, Blatchly for 30, Johnathan Haffenden for two and Liam Bryant for seven.

Burgon and Matt Peters steadied the ship, advancing the score to 103 before Peters succumbed for five.

There followed a seventh wicket partnership of 55 between Burgon and Nick Peters which was key to the final outcome. The stand was finally broken when Burgon was stumped for 56 off 84 balls with 11 fours, again illustrating his importance to this Bexhill side.

Nick Peters carried on to make a valuable 34 off 57 balls with five fours and a six until being ninth man out with the score 175. Bexhill declared after gaining two more batting points at 180.

Five Ansty bowlers picked up wickets. Jonathan Young was the most successful with 3-16 from 10 overs, William Wright took 2-38 from 13.4 and Leo Anderson 2-14 from three, and there was a wicket each for Jack Palser and Alex Gorton.

Bexhill proceeded to bowl Ansty out for 138 in 41.2 overs to secure a victory which was even more important by third-bottom Bognor Regis winning as well.

The home side struck an early blow when Byron Smith had Jonathan Young caught behind by Will Smith with the score six. Bexhill appeared firmly on top as Ansty subsided from 30-1 to 36-5, with Nick Peters claiming two wickets and Byron Smith two more.

Ansty recovered well with a sixth wicket partnership of 68 between Sam Palser and Thomas Peberdy. Sam Palser smashed 64 off 45 balls with six fours and four sixes until being caught by Bryant off Nick Peters, and Blatchly opened his account by bowling William Wright a run later.

Peberdy and Jack Palser advanced the score to 130 until Blatchly had Peberdy stumped by Will Smith for 10 off 51 balls. Blatchly then dismissed numbers 10 and 11 for ducks as Jack Palser was left stranded on 27 not out.

Blatchly ended up with 4-25 off 10.2 overs, taking his tally of league wickets for the season to 23. Byron Smith bagged 3-23 off 10 overs, almost matching his best league figures of the summer, and Nick Peters claimed 3-70 off 13.

Sussex Cricket League Division Two standings (all played 12 matches): 1 Mayfield 285pts, 2 Three Bridges 283, 3 Haywards Heath 232, 4 Billingshurst 212, 5 St James’s Montefiore 210, 6 Chichester Priory Park 190, 7 Ansty 167, 8 Bognor Regis 166, 9 BEXHILL 163, 10 Lindfield 137.

See also: * Bexhill coach hoping for show of defiance
* Bexhill stay in bottom two after heavy defeat

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