Middleton ready for new Sussex Premier League season - and more

Middleton CC are again the area’s highest placed Sussex Cricket League side this year. Ahead of their Sussex Premier League campaign, we asked chairman Matt Warren what’s been happening at the club since last summer.

Thursday, 29th April 2021, 1:00 pm
Mahesh Rawat will be Middleton CC's overseas star again this year - provided they can secure his trip here

How are things looking at Sea Lane, Matt?

The bulk of the squad remain in place and our major aims for 2021 are to integrate more of our promising younger players in to the 1st and 2nd XI set-ups.

We’ve had a number of successes at Sussex Junior Festival cricket in the past few years and hope to see some of our players who are on the Sussex pathway start to step up and make big contributions at a senior level.

How’s the squad shaping up?

It is pretty much unchanged since last season. We’re hoping to welcome back Mahesh Rawat as our overseas player, though that is a little challenging.

Jack Carson has continued his meteoric rise at Sussex CCC which everyone at the club is thrilled about but it does mean we’ll most likely not see a lot of him this year.

We’re also keen to see how some of our signings from 2020 do in Premier League cricket.

While they had a small taste in the August Cup, there’s no doubt there are greater challenges ahead this coming year.

Is the season about a title bid or consolidation?

We view it as another year of consolidation; hopefully some of the younger players gain more experience and continue to progress across all of our senior teams.

How about other teams and sections of the club?

We were thrilled the ECB and the Sussex Cricket Board appointed us the Disabilty Cricket champion club for Sussex. That will mean us hosting games for Sussex and helping provide a facility for anyone to play cricket who wants to.

Our junior section goes from strength to strength – we have nearly 100 children signed up now and it’s growing every year.

We’re also delighted the Southern Vipers are again using Middleton as their training hub for 2021.

We enjoyed a great partnership with them last year and that has been strengthened again in what should be another exciting year for the Vipers.

Aldwick v Bosham

On the second weekend of the season, Aldwick opener Richard Gabb created a club record score of 188.

He was finally bowled by Tim Brewster (2-14) and despite the huge knock he was on the losing side as Bosham triumphed by 16 runs.

Gabb survived an early appeal before scoring a run but after his early scare, he bludgeoned the ball to the boundary with 25 fours and six sixes.

Aldwick’s other batsmen watched in awe from the other end as they supported Gabb in his bold attempt to chase down the Bosham total with Tom Hoare (27), Alex Cooper (13) and Liam Tinson (13) all solid partners.

Earlier, Bosham opener Elliott Purser fell to Aldwick’s best bowler Ben Bambridge (3-33) for a duck and opening partner James Ellis (12) also fell to Bambridge, caught by Gabb. But from then on the visitors showed strength in depth with a consistent batting display making a very heathy 283-9.

Doing the damage were Jim Cox (82), Tom Gogarty (66) and Guy Elsom (40). Cox hit seven fours and six sixes and Elson raced to 40 with seven fours.

Aldwick used seven bowlers and after Bambridge’s three wickets, Ollie Smith, Mathew Tozer, Liam Hicks, Ian Guppy, Tom Hoare all bagged a wicket apiece.

This week Aldwick welcome Rustington to the Green Thumb Oval for their first game of this year’s league campaign.

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Bosham 2nd v Aldwick 2nd

For their opening match Aldwick twos decided to give ten bowlers the chance to prove themselves. But they came up against a Bosham team full of batsmen ready for the season as they posted a huge 333-4 from 40 overs.

Runs flowed from Simon Sculls-Horner (32), Jeremy Abbott (70), Keith Davey (42), William Van Niekerk (55) and Adam Selves (22*) with wickets for Frankie Bigwood (2-49, Dion Sampson ( 1-15), Alex Ryder (1-59) and Dan Austin (1-46).

Aldwick fell well short of their target but a few made double figures - Dan Cox (11) ,Oliver Duffin (11), David Edwards (13), Finley Sampson (11), Dion Sampson (14) and Dan Austin (47 ).

Adam Selves (4-12) helped bowl out Aldwick for 137.