Crowhurst Park clinched the regional final of the ECB National Village Cup in the most dramatic fashion yesterday (Sunday).
They got the better of Glynde & Beddingham by virtue of losing fewer wickets after the scores were tied. As East Sussex champions, Park now head on to the national last 32 where they will host Findon - the West Sussex winners - on June 22.
Winning the toss, Paul Brookes asked Glynde to bat first on what looked an excellent batting track. Joe Adams (25) threatened to take the game away from the visitors early on before a superb catch at gulley by Peter Beaumont put an end to his innings with the score on 53 off 12 overs.
Archie Burrows and skipper Robbie Mouland shared another 50 runs before Burrows (48) was caught in the deep. Mouland followed with the score on 127 but Glynde were still on target to post in excess of 220.
Park showed great fighting spirit, backed up by some superb fielding, to restrict Glynde to 190 all out with Brookes finishing with 4-28, Nick Peters 3-45 and Bradley Payne 2-48.
Brookes got the Park reply off to a positive start, but when he misjudged the bounce off Leigh Reed, he was bowled for a useful 28.
Dale Payne provided the backbone to the innings, while others around him took on the attack. Bradley Payne hit a huge six off Joe Adams only to fall next ball before Clive Tong joined Dale Payne in a 50-run partnership to take the score along to 118 off 30 overs.
Requiring to score at nearly eight an over off the last 10 looked tough and when Dale Payne was bowled by Adam Davies for an excellent 40, Glynde sensed they were in the ascendancy.
However, Ed Smissen and Tong moved through the gears and started to find the boundaries, with Smissen in particular playing some fine attacking shots.
Tong (41) perished going for a quick single, but Park’s young cricketers were now in running mode, putting pressure on the field.
Matt Peters added a quick 10 before chipping one to leg with Park still needing 31 off 22 balls. The departure of Smissen for a crucial 24 looked to have swung the game back in Glynde’s favour but Cameron Flanagan and Nick Taylor continued to eat into the target.
Taking 10 off the penultimate over, Park went into the final six balls requiring just four for victory only for the game to take another twist when the batsmen collided trying to sneak a single and Taylor was run out for 13.
The manner in which the scores were tied off the final ball summed up a superb match, Park scampering a quick single off a bye after a shy at the stumps missed by a whisker.