Spinners star with bat in last day defeat

Elliot Hooper top scored with 85 in Hastings Priory's last day defeat at Horsham
Elliot Hooper top scored with 85 in Hastings Priory's last day defeat at Horsham

Spin twins Elliot Hooper and Josh Poysden starred with the bat on Saturday as Hastings Priory ended their season with a defeat at Horsham.

The pair shared an eighth wicket partnership of 149 with Hooper scoring 85 and Poysden 56 not out, although the result meant that Priory slipped below their opponents to finish fourth in the Sussex Premier League.

After winning the toss, Priory got off to the worst possible start as Jake Woolley was run out without facing. Four of the top five failed to reach double figures as Priory slid to 18-3 and 46-5 despite 25 from England under-19s star Harry Finch.

Adam Maharaj-Newman made 20 and Freddie Hulbert 14, but when both fell within three runs of each other, Priory were in deep trouble at 81-7.

Hooper and Poysden came to the rescue, though, with a superb partnership which earned Priory maximum batting points, something which had seemed highly unlikely. Hooper hit nine fours in a 97-ball knock and Poysden struck four boundaries in the 110 deliveries he faced. For both men, it was their highest Sussex League score and Priory closed on 242-9.

Adam Barton (2-11 off four overs) then trapped two of Horsham’s top three batsmen lbw to leave the hosts 17-2 in reply. Finch (1-56) dismissed Ben Shoare (24) in identical fashion with the score 83, but a fourth wicket stand of 125 between Craig Gallagher (105) and Sam Attfield (64 not out) took the game away from Priory.

Buckswood School man of the match Hooper eventually removed Gallagher, but it was too late to affect the outcome of a match sponsored by DeWalt as Horsham won by six wickets.