Hastings Priory’s cricketers were condemned to a sixth straight league defeat yesterday (Sunday).
Priory lost by 38 runs at home to the Sussex Development XI in a Sussex Premier League game which they really needed to win and they now face a huge task to avoid relegation.
The Development XI - made up of the county’s top young players - totalled 206-8 from their 58 overs after winning the toss and opting to bat on a grey but warm afternoon at Horntye Park.
Finn Hulbert claimed Priory’s first success by having Dominic Sear caught behind by Leo Cammish for 14 with the score 38. George Campbell then bowled Ben Shoare for nine to make it 56-2.
The Development XI’s third wicket pair put on 50 before three wickets went down for 17 runs. Dan Doram had Fynn Hudson-Prentice stumped by Cammish for 26 and Freddie Hulbert ran out opener Beck Hemingway for 56 just two runs later. Elliot Hooper then got in on the act by having Joe Ludlow caught by Campbell for five.
George Garton and Sam Grant added a valuable 48 for the sixth wicket until Hooper (3-69) bowled Grant for 28 off 32 balls. Hooper struck again to make it 183-7 and Doram (2-44) had Garton (41) stumped by Cammish 10 runs later, but Abidine Sakande hit 17 not out off 13 balls at the end.
Sakande struck a major blow with the ball soon after tea by dismissing Harry Finch for five and another key batsman, Leo Cammish, fell to Garton for nine to leave Priory 20-2.
Campbell and Tom Gillespie, however, forged a third wicket stand of 88 which appeared to put the hosts in with a real chance. Playing shots all round the ground, Campbell batted beautifully to compile his second half-century of the weekend until being caught at midwicket in Hudson-Prentice’s first over for 59.
Gillespie was caught by the wicketkeeper for 36 after top-edging an attempted pull shot seven runs later and Priory were suddenly 120-5 after Adam Maharaj-Newman was caught on the drive by Hudson-Prentice off James Allen (3-56).
One big partnership could still have swung the match Priory’s way, but Doram was stumped for 14 to make it 141-6, and Hooper was caught and bowled off a leading edge 23 runs later having looked good in his 20.
Priory’s last four wickets went down for just four runs as they were all out for 168. Freddie Hulbert (11) was bowled round his legs trying to sweep, Jake Woolley got a thin edge behind, and Finn Hulbert was caught and bowled to finish things off.
Standings (played-points): 1 Preston Nomads 12-221, 2 East Grinstead 12-220, 3 Roffey 11-217, 4 Horsham 11-199, 5 Eastbourne 11-192, 6 Brighton & Hove 12-190, 7 Cuckfield 12-173, 8 BEXHILL 12-145, 9 Three Bridges 12-131, 10 HASTINGS PRIORY 12-104.