Village cricket: Lurgashall can’t lose - but can’t win either

Kirdford and Singleton players gather for battle
Kirdford and Singleton players gather for battle

We’ve action featuring teams from Lurgashall, Tilford, Lavant, Arundel, Singleton, Kirdford, Ashling, Walberton, Aldwick, Bognor and Rustington in our latest round-up from around the village cricket greens.

Get involved by sending your reports and team pictures to steve.bone@chiobserver.co.uk

Lurgashall v Tilford 2nd XI

Lurgashall retained their unbeaten record but once again failed to bowl out a side intent on getting a draw.

After being put in by Tilford, Lurgashall lost skipper Drew Clark in the second over.

But two century stands - firstly between Seamus Lynch (56) and Ollie Pearce and then Pearce and Tim Dixon (61) - enabled them to declare after 40 overs on 293 for three. Pearce was not out on 146.

Tilford never attempted to chase the runs and were intent on survival. Paul White was once again among the wickets early on but Tilford blocked their way to 130 for nine after 50 overs with White taking five for 38 and Dan Dillon-Thiselton two for 21.

Lavant v Arundel Grasshoppers

On a glorious June day, Arundel Grasshoppers visited Lavant for their first match between the two clubs for many years.

Arundel won the toss and had no hesitation in batting. Their openers made a bright start with the ball racing away over the fast outfield and they reached 50 without loss within ten overs.

Lavant’s bowlers stuck to their task and slowly restricted the run rate with Banks striking first to remove Connolly caught at point. Budd soon followed, also caught at point, this time off Nicholls.

Rawnsley joined the attack and caught and bowled Brown. Stevens took over from the tiring Nicholls and immediately had three wickets caught behind plus a fourth lbw to rip the heart out of the Arundel middle order.

Rawnsley bowled the two tail-enders and Arundel ended on 136.

Lavant’s reply started badly as usual, losing their first wicket from the final ball of the first over when Sands edged to slip. Brooker and Burford took the score to over 120 before Brooker fell the same way. Carroll eased the tension by carting a six over midwicket before falling plumb lbw to a delivery that squared him up.

Portsmouth saw Lavant past the total with a boundary past deep mid-wicket.

Singleton v Kirdford

In the beautiful South Downs setting of Singleton, the bowlers took all the plaudits in the mauling of Kirdford.

Batting first on a breezy but sunny day, Kirdford seemed to spend too long admiring the glorious vista around them rather than paying attention to Singleton’s opening bowlers.

N Williams took three quick wickets to leave Kirdford reeling at seven for three - and it got worse.

A brief rally by G Short (26) held up the onslaught, but when he was caught off M Rooke (3-13), Kirdford’s batting collapsed.

They were all out in less than 20 overs for a miserable 53.

Singleton duly knocked off the runs in short time, and there was indeed a ten-overs-a-side slog-fest to follow that everyone much enjoyed. But Kirdford ended up losing twice on the same day.

Old Hambledonians v Ashling

The bowlers were on top throughout. Ashling claimed the honours after bowling out the home side for 91 following their own fairly limited showing of 124 all out in 40 overs.

Paul Colley (36) and Tom Ballingal (27) top-scored for Ashling while Tom Clay’s five for 23 did the most damage for the home team. Ashling shared their wickets around with Slatter, Ballingal and Harvey taking two each. Clay was also the pick of the Hambledonians’ batting with 27.

Walberton v Aldwick

Aldwick’s Keelan Belcher (58) and Matt Robinson (28) put on 80 for the first wicket and a further 45-run unbroken partnership between Nathan Belcher (31*) and Ian Demers (18*) took the visitors to 172. 
For the home side, P Brackley (78*) carried his bat but only Ben Bambridge (17) and A Kemp (12) reached double figures as they fell 18 runs short.

The Belcher brothers shared six wickets between them, Nathan taking four. Matt Robinson also took four wickets.

Aldwick Acorns v Watersfield

Watersfield asked Aldwick to bat and started with Louis Paul, returning from Bognor for a guest appearance, and he did not disappoint with a classy 76.

Paul was well supported by Alex Cooper (34) and Will Lewry (23) as Aldwick reached 187 all out. Jamie Conrad-Smith (4-17) was Watersfield’s best bowler.

In reply, Watersfield finished 40 short of the target despite 45 from Nic Watt & 42 not out from M Lawes senior. Wickets were shared among the Acorns bowlers but Josh Sargeant and Adam Robinson bagged two wickets apiece.

Regis Rebels Midweek XI v Harlequins

After winning the toss and fielding, Bognor restricted Harlequins’ scoring on a wicket more Chennai than Chichester at Oaklands Park.

After a first Bognor wicket for Herman Paul, young leg-spinner Jamie Woolnough (2-15) and skipper John Hooker (3-16) kept Harlequins to 105 for seven.

Bognor’s rejigged line up also found the going slow as the youngsters gained valuable experience in the middle.

Apart from a decent 27 by the effervescent Mike Harris, Bognor fell short on 98 for nine, Harlequins winning a good friendly contest by seven runs.

Bognor Sunday XI v Rustington

Bognor chose to bat on a fine Regis Oval wicket.

Openers Mark Woolnough and Mikey Harris started brightly until Woolnough was run out by a fine throw from Prabhakar for 22.

Harris continued but a fine catch at point ended his day after he’d scored a decent 47 - but this paved the way for the burly Luke Seward to come and stroke a fine 100 with sumptuous drives on both sides of the wicket, all the more special given his recent ankle injury.

With all the other batsmen chipping in with good scores, Bognor posted 254 for eight.

In the Sunday spirit, Bognor rang the bowling changes. Rarely-used veteran Paul Schooley used flight and guile to make a fine breakthrough as Mark Woolnough took an excellent diving catch at mid-wicket.

The bowling laurels belonged to his sons Tom and Jamie, with Tom grabbing his two first senior wickets in a fine spell of two for 12 and Jamie going through a fine repertoire of leg-spin to take a well-deserved four for 22.

Bognor won by 75 runs.