Classic Matches Down The Years

Updated: 4 days ago

Each week that passes without cricket we are taking a look back at games against our would be opponents. This week our cancelled league fixtures against Henfield, Aldwick and Broadbridge Heath.

30 MAY 2020 | Henfield, Aldwick and Broadbridge Heath

Henfield (away)

Another enjoyable 1st XI fixture in recent years as again, many of our Steyning school kids know players in the oppo side. We’ve played the Roosters 19 times down the merged club years first as Sunday friendlies but more recently, in league games for all our sides. The classic match took place on the Common back in July 2016. We were playing our only season to date in a tough county wide league at places like Hellingly, Seaford and Rye (which is frankly nearly in France). Tim Monday was captain of ours ide and it’s another Monday cunning plan involving very few bowlers…

Henfield Common Cricket Ground

Monday lost the toss and Henfield asked us to bat first. They must have known the challenges ahead as, after a standard good opening stand that season – on this occasion between Sanchit (57) and TvN (22) of 80, we only marginally managed to double our score; JE-M (28) and valuable lower order runs from Neil North (15) getting us up to 165 all out. After tea, and this is where Monday’s captaincy shone, he decided as the pitch was so slow that he’d take all the pace off the ball and just bowl himself and Charlie D. Jake and Northy were cast into the field. Charlie bowled 23 and the captain 23.3 overs - interrupted when his son ran out one of his school mates George Stewart to ensure we’d won by just four runs. Reuben had run out an opener earlier whilst the old man and the yoof grabbed four wickets each. This is precisely the type of captaincy that we can expect from Monday’s evil sidekick James Howgate when cricket finally resumes…


WCTCC: Sanchit Batra+, Tim van Noort, Jack Elliott-Monday, Eddie Miller, Reuben Taylor, Ed Killner, Charlie Davies, Jake Hodgson, Neil North, Jonathan van Noort, Tim Monday

Aldwick (home)

Like Eastergate whom we featured earlier, Aldwick 1st XI used to play our 1s back in the day and now play the 2nd XI. Ed White used to captain them and has now joined us to help Callum and his merry men. Our classic match was the first game of the season in 2011 when the 2nds took their 2nds at the Rec.

Aldwick won the toss and asked us to bat. How kind. The backbone of our innings was 93 runs from opener Charlie Reeves aided in a useful second wicket stand by Bob Llewellyn (45) before father (43*) and son (37*) Hodgson punctured further holes in the visitors morale. This allowed captain Glover to declare on 273-7 after 45 overs. After tea, only the lower middle order offered any resistance to a blistering Chilt attack – Jake and Al Reeves taking three wickets each as Martin was able to use seven bowlers to unlock their batting. Aldwick were all out for 122 as we recorded our highest ever victory against them – 151 runs.


WCTCC 2nd XI: Charlie Reeves, Liam Richman+, Rob Llewellyn, Craig Pulling, Matt Goring, Stephen Hodgson, Matt hennings, Al Reeves, Jake Hodgson, Martin Glover

Broadbridge Heath (home)

Traditionally Sunday opponents, we again have started to encounter the boys more recently in the league. Our featured game was the last match of the season at Thakeham last summer when the 3s entertained their 2s.

Jon Denton captained the side in the absence of Capel with Al Newman taking the gloves. JD won the toss and chose to bat on another hot day at Abingworth. Good mates Charlie Woodage and Benji Jackson overcame the early loss of Newman to grab the initiative and score quickly around the large outfield on the Meadow. They had put on 76 when Woodage (44) was run out. Alex Tatchell and Jackson put on 57 for the fourth wicket before Benji perished after making a well earned half century – Alex had made 46 of them in an an entertaining knock! We eventually reached 215-6 off our 40 overs. After tea, Denton used no less than eight bowlers and although their top order threatened briefly, we kept taking wickets to slow the run rate and ensure we won comfortably by 39 runs. Sophie Grayson took 2-27 from her seven overs and was the pick of a fine bowling effort as we ended our season at Thakeham with a win.

Other notable matches on 30th May: 'Club XI overcomes Northbrook (IOW) in midweek thriller' Scorecard

23 MAY 2020 | Findon, Crawley and Ifield

Findon (home)

We’ve played Findon 34 times in adult matches since our first season as a merged club in 2001. That’s more than any other opponent. We’ve only recently become acquainted at 1st XI level however. They have always been a senior Sussex League side of some repute whilst until recently, little West Chilt floundered around several leagues and divisions below. After the Sussex Leagues were merged and a promotion or two, our 1st XI found themselves in Div 3 (West) playing the might of Steyning, Worthing and Findon. As we’ve mostly played Findon at the Long Furlong down the years, the home matches have been few and far between. For our classic match, we’ll go back to 2018 for a 2nd XI run fest at the Rec.

Matthew Goring struck 88 against Findon

Captain Goring won the toss and being a pugnacious chap, elected to bat. Cal opening with Simon Capel and struck 39 before everyone else tucked in. Reg (24), Gus James in a rare adult outing for us (also 24) and the captain (88) struck the ball to all parts before Frank Rawat with a half century and Josh Reeves (24) flayed a flagging oppo attack. 302-9 off 48 overs and Goring was able to make a rare declaration. After tea, Chaloner quickly disposed of their top three before Findon’s Jon Flowers and keeper Rogers took their time sensibly and accummulated steadily. Opening bowler Hodgson was brought back to dispose of Rogers but although four more Findon wickets fell in quick succession, Flower found an able ally in Gary Howell and they were both able to block out for a draw. 204-8 and whilst the 2s were disappointed, there were more than five hundred runs for the Chilt faithful to enjoy. This appears to be our first classic match not featuring our Charlie Davies…


WCTCC 2nd XI: Simon Capel, Callum Wyatt, Luke Emmett, Matt Goring*, Gus James, Toby Taylor+, Ollie Holden, Mithelesh Rawat, James Chaloner, Josh Reeves, Stephen Hodgson

Crawley (away)

Usually home wins prevail in this fixture. For our classic game at Southgate, we’ll go back to the 2s visit on the last match of the season in 2016. We needed a miracle in third to overhaul Crawley Eagles in second place which in the event, never happened. Crawley 2s finished bottom of the league that season despite the upset that unfurled that day. We won the toss and Mr Goring put them in. A real team performance with the ball and barring Danny Abbott, everyone bagged at least one wicket. All bowlers were economical doing their job for the team with Andy Cantrell grabbing 3-20 from his ten overs. Crawley were all out for 118 in the 45th over and we were well on top at halfway.

Southgate Park, Crawley CC

After tea however, we could only manage three double figure individual scores with the captain top scoring with just 23. We were still 16 runs short when #11 Cantrell was bowled and were all out for just 102. So light on runs not for the first time and whilst the pitch may have played a part, we would have seen how it played bowling first!


WCTCC 2nd XI: Ben Hasler, Gabriel Peck, Callum Wyatt+, Matt Goring*, Carl Room, Ben Miller, Alfie Reeves, Reece Collins-Powell, Dan Abbott, Phil Abbott, Andy Cantrell.

Ifield (home)

We’ve played these guys 23 times as a merged club and for our classic home game, we’ll go back to a 2004 1st XI game against their 3rds! Shows how times have changed ! This was a massacre by the bowlers and the batting for once matched them. No idea who won the toss but our visitors batted first. Four bowlers grabbed braces – Jim and Malcolm will be names that people will recognise, Tony Kelly and Rupert Cleaver maybe less so to many. Jim was rapid in those days (it says here) and so was Cleaver. Malc bowled at the same speed he does now and TK was a swing bowler in the mould of Al Reeves. Mike Ford and Brian Chambers took the other two and Ifield were all out for just 89 in the 33rd over. The scorecard says it took 0 overs to get the 90 runs but since Chambers got 60 of our reply and Mike Ford just 18, it may not have been much more than that… Crowd pleaser Andy Price made a rare 1st XI appearance that day.


WCTCC: Brian Chambers, Mike Ford, Bob Llewellyn, Neil Miller, David Hardisty+, Malcolm Fitzgerald*, Ned Brown, Andy Price, Tony Kelly, Jim Gee and Rupert Cleaver.

Other notable matches on 23rd May: '1st XI overcome old rivals West Blatchington in low-scoring thriller.' Scorecard

16 MAY 2020 | Littlehampton, Eastergate and Ram

Littlehampton, Clapham and Patching (away)

This is becoming boring I know but Littlehampton IS a big cricket club and one again one that we could only have dreamed of playing in the noughties. We made do with the odd friendly either side of the merger and colts games in the SJCF. They then dropped out of the County League and came up against us first in 2013 in the old Invitation First Division. And we’ve remained with them or above them ever since as the Sussex Cricket League pyramid structure came into shape. In the four seasons we’ve played them in the league on the coast, we’ve only managed one draw as they’ve generally put runs on the board and bowled us out.

So the game we will focus on was the first league visit from the 1s back in 2013 when we managed to avoid defeat. The home side won the toss and batted as they always tend to do at their’s. First opener Nathan Perry (88) and then Chris Heberlein (90*) held their innings together. Mick, Charlie D and JC with a brace of wickets each – Charlie Reeves and Scott Pulling with a couple of catches each too. After tea, three partnerships of note ensured a draw for us – keeper Thomas Chambers made an unbeaten half century which was the prime reason we held firm. Tommo was aided by Charlie R (32), Mick (30) and Chaloner again (36). History makers!


WCTCC: Charlie Reeves, Callum Wyatt, Mick Armstrong, Tom Chambers+, Jack Elliott-Monday, James Chaloner, Scott Pulling, Iain Haggart, James Howgate, Ben Miller and Charlie Davies.

Eastergate (home)

Eastergate 1sts used to play our 1st XI but now plays in 6W with the 2s. For our repeat home game, we’ll go back to early August in 2012. We finished top of Invitation League Div 2 that season and they were bottom. Asked to bat by our visitors, we managed 251-6 declared off 44 overs. Mick got an unbeaten ton whilst Howgate made a typically busy 65 before being run out. Chaloner accummulated 37 steady runs opening the batting too before he took over with the ball after tea taking 6-50. Jack Stannard top scored for ‘Gate with just 29 as they were skittled for just 78. The ubiquitous Mick bagged 3-11 from his 5.5 overs.


WCTCC: Jack Elliott-Monday, James Chaloner, Callum Wyatt, Mick Armstrong, Ben Hasler, Ollie Budgen, James Howgate*, Tom Chambers+, Matthew Goring, Jake Hodgson, Malcolm Fitzgerald.

Ram (away)

Always a popular opponent especially for the 1s and 2s when we played in that park next to the big cinema in Crawley. Not because we can grab some popcorn and see a movie afterwards but due to their legendary hospitality following the match. Their pavilion is a high class Indian restaurant!

(We need to ensure that when the 3s visit Tilgate to play their 3s, that our kids and parents follow Mr Capel back to the restaurant bacause they’ve said we’re welcome to visit…) FYI Rama or Ram is a major deity of Hinduism and many of the Ram guys ‘ families emanate from Gudjerati province. Their teams are always tough opponents and for our featured game, we’ll go back to 2015 when Tim Monday took his brave 1st XI up for an Invitation League Division 1 match.

Monday won the toss and asked our hosts to bat. Two of the half a dozen Patels on show held us up – Kartik and Nitesh making an unbeaten 50 and 43 respecively in their 191-9 off 49 overs. The captain took 3-49 off 15 typically miserly overs whilst Howgate grabbed 3-13 off just four. After tea, Howgate (24) again and Mick (40) set off in quick pursuit of the target. After our top 4 had been dismissed, it was left to JE-M (57*) and Alex Rydon (18*) to see us home to our first win on their patch.


WCTCC: James Howgate, Mick Armstrong, Ben Hasler, Callum Wyatt, Jack Elliott-Monday, Alex Rydon+, Josh Reeves, Liam Richman, Matt Goring, Tim Monday* and Alfie Reeves.

Other notable matches on 16th May: 'Will Chambers and Neil Miller shine as a Club XI batters Hurstpierpoint’s Sunday side'. Scorecard

9 MAY 2020 | Broadwater, Steyning and Billingshurst

Broadwater (home)

Only really one season to focus on against the Worthing side and that was in 2017. The league had reorganised that year and we found ourselves in a Division 5 (West) playing lots of weaker 2nd XIs and really only having one decent (1st XI) opponents, old rivals Broadwater. To cap it all, we also lost our former leader Tim Monday mid season tragically in early July against Middleton 2s. The whole club was shaken. At the end, it came down to us and Broadwater vying for the one promotion spot up for grabs. In the event, we lost just one game all season up at Southgate against Crawley 1st XI but beat Broadwater home and away to secure promotion and win it for Tim. The home game came first against Broadwater on the 24th June.

First XI celebrating our League win in 2017

In front of a large Rec crowd including quite a few away supporters, captain Jarvis lost the toss again and we were asked to bat. He and Tom Chambers set off immediately putting the visitors on the back foot striking boundaries and rotating the strike where they could. Tommo was out top scoring with 46 and the toal on 71. In a typical Chilt batting display, wickets then fell semi regularly but we managed to post a reasonably competitive 200-9 off our maximum 53 overs. James Iago bowled more than half the visitor’s overs. Charlie Davies chipped in with a useful 26 batting with the tail. After tea, the result could have been nip and tuck especially whilst Aussie keeper Sage Cook was still at the crease. Reuben and Jake bagged both openers whilst one of our most popular overseas players ManiDeep Singh (Money) snared another. However the hero of the day not for the first time was TvN. In a crucial match, van Noort bowled with extra pace, bounce and typical hostility and the Broadwater batsmen had no answers. 13 overs 7 maidens 7 wickets for 17 runs was one of the finest bowling performances ever seen at the Rec and it was TvN’s best ever too. We had won comfortably in the end by 63 runs and never looked back that season effectively clinching promotion in the penultimate match at their ground in August.


WCTCC: Tom Chambers+, Tim Jarvis*, Jack Elliott-Monday, Reuben Taylor, Hugo Gillespie, Tim van Noort, Iain Haggart, Charlie Davies, Manideep Singh, Jake Hodgson and Tim Monday.

Steyning II (away)

Down the years, a visit to the cricket ground in the town where so many of our kids are schooled means that this is a special fixture for many kids and parents. Like Findon, it was only recently that our 1st XIs started playing each other even if the 2s started a couple of years earlier. Not got a brilliant record there either but one game does stick in the memory particularly in the mind of Benjamin Lucking. Ironically he was never schooled at Steyning Grammar School (SGS) but maybe the likes of JEM, Tom Chambers and Reuben have been trying too hard to impress. The 1st XI got well beaten last year in the last league game of the season but that didn’t stop Steyning from being relegated after Findon came back from the dead. The Lucking influenced low-scoring thriller took place the year before on the 18th August 2018.

Steyning - genuinely the best picture we could find!

Reuben was captain for the day at the Memorial Playing Fields in the continuing absence of Jarvis - he contrived to lose the toss and the 1sts were asked to bat. 2-2 became 65-8 and we were getting blown away at the hands of some reasonable bowling. Jack Manvell and Isaac Tidley picked up seven of the Chilt wickets. The crucial partnership was between Lucking and Frank Rawat who put on 59 for the ninth wicket. In a low scoring game, this was vital. We were soon all out for just 126 and Steyning were clearly in the driving seat at tea. Ben’s 56 was not far off half our score and without him, we’d have no doubt been soundly beaten. But wait, think of Headingley 1981 and we soon realised that a strong start for us in their innings could see them panic. Frank, in perhaps his finest game for us in his year as our overseas, quickly took four of the top five batters. They were soon 63-6 but unlike us, there was no Ben Lucking to come. Reuben bowled beautifully to compliment Frank’s aggression and took 3-12 from 8.1 overs. Another former SGS pupil Alex Miller bowled top scorer Alex Hunt and Hugo bagged two for himself. Steyning sank to just 80 all out when Reuben bowled last man Andy Isaacs with the first ball of the 31st over. Another amazing match in a long series of amazing matches from our kids. Ollie Holden, Tommo and Frank were the oldest players on display again as the only question at the end as usual was who was driving everyone home?


WCTCC: Tom Chambers, Reuben Taylor*, Hugo Gillespie, Callum Wyatt, Alfie Reeves, Will Farnes, Ben Lucking, Toby Taylor+, Alex Miller, Mithelesh Rawat, Ollie Holden.

Billingshurst III (home)

Quite a few matches against our bigger neighbours down the years. The 1st Xis are yet to meet but we’ve played their other sides and regularly at colts’ games too. The flashback is in 2007 when our 2s entertained their 3s in our first season with a 2nd XI. After five straight defeats, we had thrashed Pulborough 4ths in our last home game (aided by one or two 1st XI players on a league break) and were looking to make it two from two at the Rec Billy batted first – no idea who won the toss – and helped by four wickets from captain Martin Glover, we restricted our visitors to 158 all out. Two wickets each for Fitz and Will Chambers. Chilt old boy Mark Tuppen made 26 as captain on his return to the Rec. In reply after tea, despite losing keeper Greg Brown for a duck, Fitz (30) again, Bob Llewellyn with a typical 57* and then Sam Aviss with an unbeaten 37 saw us home. Both Goring boys made ducks!


WCTCC 2nd XI: Greg Brown+, Malcolm Fitzgerald, Rob Llewellyn, Neil Moulton, Sam Aviss, Sean Goring, Matt Goring, Jack Glover, Will Chambers, Jim Gee and Martin Glover.

Other notable matches on 9th May: Sunday side beat Cuckfield in 2010, a clean sweep for our league sides and a victory for the U14s at East Grinstead in 2015. 1st XI scorecard in win at Pulborough.

2 MAY 2020 | Arundel Grasshoppers and Tilgate

Arundel Grasshoppers (away)

We play the Castle away once every four years so this season would have been only our fifth visit as a merged club. We’re actually unbeaten on their ground since merger - the previous four matches have seen two victories and two washouts. When the games at the Castle come up, 300 people suddenly make themselves available! The two victories were in the most recent matches in 2016 and 2012. For our classic game, we’ll look at the most recent match in 2016.

Hodgson took a familiar Chilt mix of old lags and youth to the Duke of Norfolk’s patch in a pre-season friendly at the end of April. We won the toss and decided to bat first. Our top three batsmen’s ages put together would have been a similar figure to our final total of 171-9 off 37 overs. Peter Jones (73 years, not runs) and Denton perished early leaving the ever athletic Fitz (21 runs, not years) and Mick (61) to rebuild. Chaloner and J.Reeves nicked and struck a few towards the end to get us to 170 odd which is usually competitive at the Castle. After tea, we set about their batsmen. I say batsmen but actually what I mean was one batsman - Bill Corefield who struck 84 out of their eventual total of 138 a/o in 32 overs. Mick and Josh took five of the ten wickets to fall. So it’s such a shame that this year we have had our third cancellation out of the five possible matches we could have played there. This was incidentally one of the last games Liam Richman played for us. He’s now plying his trade over at Bolney after several years with us, not least captaining our 3s for several years.


WCTCC: Peter Jones, Jonathan Denton, Malcolm Fitzgerald, Mick Armstrong, Bruce Fryer+, Ben Lucking, Alfie Reeves, James Chaloner, Josh Reeves, Liam Richman, Stephen Hodgson*

Tilgate (away)

The Crawley side only came into existence last season and it was an away win apiece in Div 10 NW. So we have a choice of just one match when we delve back into the archives… The 3rds travelled to the Park on the last day of August in the last league game of 2019. We couldn’t go up but could deny their hosts promotion. Simon Capel had a reasonably strong side out and as it was August and we’d had a reasonably dry summer, the pitch was in reasonable nick. Simon lost the toss and we were asked to field. We used seven bowlers in all and standard 3s, everyone bar debutant Matt Avery was under 21. Although the wily Jack Shaw captured 4-26 off his five overs polishing off the tail, the relentless Harriet again stood out with 2-29 off her nine. Neverthless Tilgate still managed 197 all out off 39 overs and as with all our men’s league sides, that can often be a challenging target for us. Game on. Ross opened with Ollie Holden and whilst the youngster perished early, the positively elderly Holden (78) held the majority of our reply together masterfully. The captain chipped in with a typical contribution (43) before Trees (16), Archie G-W (24), Tatchell and Shaw brought the points back to Thakeham. This denied our hosts promotion and if this season ever sees any action, they will be one of our main challengers again as we both seek to leave Division 10.


WCTCC: Ollie Holden, Ross Lucas, Simon Capel*, Adam Trees, Archie Graham-Watson, Alex Tatchell, Jack Shaw, Matt Avery, Josh Metters, Harriet Thornton, Chris Seaton

Other notable games on the 2nd May: U14s tie with Cuckfield at West Chilt (2009): 'Ben Miller‘s side ties a thriller at the Rec.' Scorecard

25 APRIL 2020 | Southwater and Ferring

Southwater (away)

Our near neighbours were one of many local sides that we looked up to in the early years post merger. They were a strong Invitation League outfit who eventually made it in into the old County League structure ; however, like many others, they have descended as we climbed above them in the rankings. They have a wonderful new home but after a few lean years, their 1st XI currently sits in Div 5 West. For our classic encounter, we only needed to go back 12 months to the first ever match at their new ground - every other encounter up the road has resulted in a thrashing for us (or the game was abandoned with us about to get a thrashing!)

Southwater's brand new pavilion

In 2019, skipper for the day Cal lost the toss and our Club XI were asked to field on a windy but dry day. Hugh soon caused problems on a bouncy track, first breaking Matt Lacey's finger with and then followed that by nicking off Nick Baker who had been a significant thorn in our side in previous years. Theo bowled beautifully and picked up 3-12 from his five overs and with everyone else chipping in, Southwater subsided to just 106 all out after 30 overs. Whilst that appeared inadequate, you never know how good a pitch it is until both sides have batted. In the event, their total was comfortably within our grasp. Morne, on debut, opened with Alfie and although the wily South African perished just short of his fifty and Holden got a quacker, Alfie and Toby Taylor ensured there were no further alarms as we won by eight wickets. The game was also remarkable for one particular catch from Ollie Holden, his first for WCTCC in his second season.


WCTCC: Morne Louw+, Alfie Reeves, Ollie Holden, Toby Taylor+, Will Farnes, Charlie Davies, Ben Lucking, Callum Wyatt*, Malcolm Fitzgerald, Hugh Warmisham, Theo Trevellyan-Clark. (ML and TT both kept)

Ferring (away) We’ve only played the boys on the coast a couple of times with both matches resulting in comfortable home wins for us at the Rec. (They’re a friendly side that don’t play in the league). So it would have been our first ever visit to Sea Lane. For our classic match, we’re going to choose the more recent of the previous two fixtures played at the Rec on 25th August 2013. Our Sunday 2nd XI in a rare outing captained by Mick Armstrong.

Ferring Cricket Club

Ferring lost the toss and elected to field. We opened with Jake and Tom Wilkinson. Wilko perished early on but Shakey went on to make a characteristically quickfire 52 with ten fours off 33 balls. Only two other scores of note - the Aussie captain made an unbeaten 119 (and didn’t retire which these days is a big fine on a Sunday) and Bruce compiled an unbeaten 51. We reached 254 off our allocated 40 overs which looked more than competitive at that stage. Following tea, we used no less than eight bowlers and frankly, never looked like losing once we had disposed of their number three who made 70 and their number eight who hit a few lusty blows in his 46 before Wilko got him out. The pick of our bowlers was our versatile young barman and groundsman, Mr J.Gee who took 4-34 off his eight overs. Ferring were all out for 217 with an over to spare and we’d won by 37 runs.


WCTCC: Tom Wilkinson, Jake Hodgson, Charlie Davies, Mick Armstrong*, Iain Haggart, Aran Kay, Charlie Williams, Bruce Fryer+, Charlie Reeves, Gabriel Peck, Alfie Reeves

Other matches on the 25th April down the years: Portslade (Away) in 2015: 'Another batting collapse sees us vanquished on the coast' Scorecard

18 APRIL 2020 | West Wittering

There was a period in the mid teens (2010-2014) where West Wittering 1st XI and our 2s were both climbing the leagues steadily together. In those days, (current Chairman) Stephen Hodgson and vice captain Al Reeves managed the side. Even then, we tended to have a stronger bowling attack than batting. For our classic match at Millennium Meadow, we go back to 2013 and a rare match report from the captain:

Having lost the toss West Chiltington were invited to bat first. Ben Hasler and the ever youthful David Hardisty (playing his first game of the season for the 2nd XI) opened the batting and made a solid start against a reasonably hostile West Wittering bowling attack. Runs off the bat proved difficult to come by but wayward bowling allowed the scoreboard to tick over. Hasler was the first to perish, strangled down the legside by keeper Hackshaw. Jack Elliott-Monday (JEM) joined Hardisty and it was soon apparent that JEM’s recent good form hadn’t deserted him; he was soon producing an array of crisp cover drives and deft glances, which allowed the score rate to pick up. At the other end, David was starting to find his touch and was now matching Jack run for run. Wittering however kept bowling with hostility and with the introduction of Straight, some accuracy as well. JEM eventually placed a well struck shot into the hands of an opposition fielder and was out for 28. Soon after, Hardisty was bowled by Straight for a top score of 37. The only other batsman to make an impact was Scott Pulling who dispatched anything too short or too full to the boundary. He was eventually out for 22 very important runs. These three innings eventually proved to be crucial in what seemed, at the time, to be an under par score. In addition to some good bowling, Wittering fielded brilliantly and when Chilt were eventually all out in the 49th over for 165, there was a sense that it was perhaps 50 runs or more short of a competitive target.

A few choice words of encouragement at an impromptu team meeting in the middle at the start of their innings seemed to have an effect. We spoke about bowling accurately, fielding with enthusiasm and taking catches when they came our way. And so, when Wittering were 3 wickets down after 4 overs with only 1 run on the board, there was a sense that perhaps 165 was a competitive score! David Bowen Davies (DBD) and Reece Collins-Powell (RCP) bowled beautifully. Both were accurate in line and on the spot with their length. DBD's first wicket was a very well taken catch in slips by Matt “the quiet man” Goring and his second quickly followed when their no 3 played all around an inswinging yorker. RCP bowling from the other end gave the batsmen a different set of problems and soon also had two wickets to his name. After both had completed their permitted overs, they were replaced by Gabriel (Peck) and JEM. There is always a concern whether new bowlers can maintain the good work and intensity that had gone on before. The answer was an emphatic, yes they could and they most certainly did. Both also took wickets and at drinks, the score was 50 for 5 and once play resumed, the score very quickly became 76 for 8. Mitch Hackshaw, the Wittering keeper, had come to the crease just before the break and showed clear intention that he thought the game was still there for the taking. He played some excellent shots and was the only batsman to make any impact on the bowling. With runs and overs to spare, Charlie Davies was brought into the attack and after 1.5 overs, had taken the final two wickets with Hackshaw, the last man out, stumped by the deft hand of Hardisty for 59. (There was no doubt that a stumping had taken place as all three stumps lay completely flattened on the floor and the bails were caught by the square leg umpire as they flew through the air). West Wittering were eventually all out for 117 and I know we are all looking forward to the return match later in the summer. This was an excellent game that brought out the best of all involved. and with comments like “I think this was perhaps the best game of cricket I have played in” together with the following compliment from their umpire “your first four bowlers produced some of the best bowling I’ve seen for many years”, are always nice to hear and offers reassure that West Chiltington and Thakeham is moving in the right direction. Well done to all involved.


WCTCC: David Hardisty+, Ben Hasler, Jack Elliott-Monday, Jack Carter, Scott Pulling, David Bowen-Davies, Matthew Goring, Gabriel Peck, Reece Collins-Powell, Stephen Hodgson*, Charlie Davies

Other games on the 18th April down the years: Middleton-on-Sea (Away) 2015. 'Big Sean Heather ton downs Chilt'. Scorecard

Mill Road, West Chiltington, Pulborough RH20 2PZ, UK

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