Unbroken stand of 138 sees Bexhill home

Jamie Wicks bowls for Bexhill against Ifield. Picture by Steve Hunnisett (eh32014a)
Jamie Wicks bowls for Bexhill against Ifield. Picture by Steve Hunnisett (eh32014a)

Bexhill’s cricketers kept themselves in the promotion hunt with a much-needed victory at home to Ifield on Saturday.

An unbroken third wicket partnership of 138 between man of the moment Johnathan Haffenden and Callum Guest took Bexhill past the winning post with eight wickets and seven balls to spare.

Haffenden was 72 not out off 82 balls with 10 fours and a six, while Guest’s unbeaten 74 from 117 deliveries with eight boundaries was his highest Sussex eague score for the club.

Bexhill won the toss at a windy Polegrove on Saturday and elected to field. The hosts got off to a dream start by reducing the opposition to 6-3 with Joe Cox (1-20 off seven overs) making the initial breakthrough and Andrew Williams (3-32 off nine) striking twice in quick succession.

Raza Ali (24) and Jack Groves staged a partial recovery with a fourth wicket stand of 43, but Shawn Johnson (1-22 off five) had the former caught behind and then a double blast from Elliot Guest (2-13 off eight) left Ifield 62-6.

Ifield wicketkeeper Groves went on to make 50 and share a seventh wicket partnership of 59 with Clayton Caltsounis (38) until falling to Jamie Wicks (1-40 off nine).

Although Caltsounis was trapped lbw by Williams with the score 142, Ifield skipper Russell Jacob (32 not out) and Graeme Dean (23 not out) added an unbeaten 47 for the ninth wicket as the Crawley-based side ended its 53 overs with a respectable total of 189-8.

Bexhill lost captain Malcolm Johnson (14) to Caltsounis with the score 35 and Tim Hambridge (29) to Jacob 19 runs later, but Haffenden and Callum Guest ensured there were no more slip-ups to continue the unbeaten home league record.

Standings (all played 14 matches): 1 Eastbourne 344pts, 2 Goring-by-Sea 328, 3 BEXHILL 305, 4 Findon 273, 5 Ifield 230, 6 CROWHURST PARK 228, 7 St James’s Montefiore 197, 8 Middleton 190, 9 Pulborough 150, 10 Glynde & Beddingham 124.