Thirteen-year-old bowls starlet Ajay Morphett made a winning start to his Middleton Cup career for Sussex.
The reigning national under-15 indoor champion led for team captain David Hubbard in a 22-16 victory over Travis Mellor.
However, the Isle of Wight produced a shock to defeat Sussex 122-116 in their first round-robin group match at Worthing Pavilion and take 16 points to Sussex’s six.
While Morphett led well on his debut, another rink with his father Rob Morphett and fellow Spartan BC player Charles Wright playing front end lost to an in-form Alan Cawdell 13-24.
On another rink, Carl Dyer and Mike Stone (both Sidley Martlets) produced good games as they won 27-20 over Darren Griffiths, but their victory was not enough to secure an overall win.
Sussex’s next game in the Middleton Cup group is against Middlesex at Ladygate BC on Saturday June 13 and there may be changes to Saturday’s team.
Sussex will also visit Middlesex, again at Ladygate, in the first round of the Balcombe Trophy this weekend.
This competition is a double fours format and Bexhill will provide two of the eight-man team in the form of Stuart Holland (Spartan) and Carl Dyer (Sidley Martlets).
The eight players selected are Keith Cheetham (White Rock), Darren Anderson, Paul Gandey and David Hubbard (all Hove & Kingsway), plus Matt Ives (Pulborough), Dyer, Holland and Ollie Ovett (Hove & Kingsway). Stone was selected, but was unavailable.
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