A below-strength Bexhill cricket team was beaten away to table-topping opposition despite making a splendid start yesterday (Saturday).
Missing the likes of Callum Guest, Max Finzel, Johnathan Haffenden and Ashar Zaidi, Bexhill lost by eight wickets against Sussex Premier League pacesetters Roffey even though both of their opening batsmen compiled half-centuries.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, first wicket pair Tim Hambridge and Malcolm Johnson gave Bexhill a solid platform with a partnership of 90 which ended when captain Johnson was trapped LBW by Alex Collins for 52 off 65 balls with 11 fours.
Young number three Cameron Burgon then hung around for 23 balls for a single, but his departure at 102-2 was the first of seven wickets to go down for just 22 runs. Hambridge was the sixth man out having top-scored with 56 off 135 deliveries with nine boundaries.
Dean Crawford - the only one of the last nine batsmen to score more than two - fought back with 26 off 22 balls featuring one four and three sixes before Bexhill were bowled out for 152 in the 52nd over. Daniel Smith took 5-54 and Kuldeep Rawat 4-36 from 21.1 overs.
After another tough afternoon with the bat, Bexhill did at least pick up a relatively early wicket with the ball when Shawn Johnson had Roffey captain Josh Fleming caught behind by Jack Richardson for 13 with the score 18.
It was fairly plain sailing for the hosts thereafter, though, as Smith and Chris Webb put on 115 for the second wicket until the latter was bowled by Shawn Johnson for 75 off 79 balls with 14 fours and two sixes.
Smith completed a good all-round game by guiding Roffey home in the 36th over with an unbeaten 53 from 108 balls containing nine fours. Shawn Johnson was the only successful Bexhill bowler with 2-30 off nine overs, including three of the four maidens in the innings.
Bexhill are back in action this afternoon as they host Brighton & Hove in round two of the Gray-Nicolls Sussex T20 Cup. Hastings Priory are at home to Horsham and both games are due to start at 1pm.
Sussex Premier League standings (played-points): 1 Roffey 6-145, 2 East Grinstead 7-110, 3 Preston Nomads 6-108, 4 Horsham 6-107, 5 Cuckfield 7-107, 6 Brighton & Hove 7-103, 7 Three Bridges 7-87, 8 Eastbourne 6-64, 9 HASTINGS PRIORY 6-58, 10 BEXHILL 6-43.