Priory and Bexhill set for final day derby

Shawn Johnson batting for Bexhill in the corresponding fixture against Hastings Priory at the end of last season.
Shawn Johnson batting for Bexhill in the corresponding fixture against Hastings Priory at the end of last season.

The cricketers of Hastings Priory and Bexhill will go head-to-head on the final day of the Sussex Premier League season tomorrow (Saturday).

Priory will come fifth in the table if they win at home to already relegated Bexhill. Play will get underway from 11.30am at Horntye Park.

“It’s always nice to beat Bexhill if we can,” said Priory coach Ian Gillespie. “I’m sure they will want to give a good account of themselves against their local rivals and finish on a high.

“From our point of view, we will just look to continue the run that we’re on and to finish the season with three (consecutive) wins would be a good finish for us. That would give us eight wins, which would be a nice, solid effort.”

Priory could be without a trio of slow bowlers. Jason Finch is off to South Africa to do some coaching work with Guernsey, Elliot Hooper is doubtful because of a university/work commitment and Jed O’Brien is unavailable.

Jack Coleman is likely to come back up from the seconds and Priory hope that fast bowler Adam Barton will return from injury.

Bexhill are guaranteed to finish bottom having won just once in the league all season and lost the reverse fixture at the start of July by 48 runs.

“You never want to lose to Hastings whether it’s a friendly or whatever it is,” said Bexhill captain Johnathan Haffenden. “You want to finish the year with a win and it would be nice to do it at Hastings.

“We’ve all been keen to get a win under our belt at some stage. And although we’re already relegated, it’s still something you can take into next year. We need to finish strongly, have a little break and then build for next year.

“We will still be looking to be positive. They’ve had a good year and beaten some good sides, but we’ll go out and give it our best. We’ve been improving, we’ve been close and hopefully it will be our week to get over the line.”

Haffenden is hoping to have a few players back for the final game of Bexhill’s four-year stay in the Premier League.