Hansford helps Middleton to victory in thriller

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ONE of the best Sussex League games of the season ended with a last-ball victory for Middleton at Steyning in Sussex League division three west.

A 191-run stand between Ben Hansford (125) and Rexy Nelmes (67) set the foundations for a thrilling finish.

The sombre skies above Steyning promised a day of inclement weather as Middleton won the toss and elected to bowl.

They had lost two frontline bowlers, Rawstrone and Thompson, to illness, leaving a weakened attack which Steyning took great advantage of, smashing a total of 241 off their alloted overs and losing only four wickets.

Hunt (76) and 16-year-old Lee Mottershead (99no) were the stand-out performers for the home side and Middleton could only be described as lacklustre in the field and ineffective with the ball.

Captain Brandon Hanley claimed three wickets while Chris Spedding picked up the other.

At the tea break, the mood in the Middleton dressing room was as grey as the weather.

Steyning took a wicket in the second over but Middleton responded in a positive manner.

As the home side took the visitors’ bowling attack to all parts of the ground, the shoe was now on the other foot as Nelmes and Hansford piled on the runs.

But then the visitors lost five wickets for seven, leaving Sean Rebbetts to score two off the last ball to secure victory.

Victorious captain Hanley said: “It is brilliant to see the team really graft for a win. It shows the characters in the dressing room. We have one captain and ten leaders.”