On another beautiful Saturday, Grinstead played host to a strong Middleton side who were looking to impose another victory against Grinstead.
Grinstead won the toss and boldly put Middleton into bat on what looked an excellent batting track once more in what has been a fine July for weather. Lewis Hatchett once again started excellently taking three early wickets in an accurate spell. Firstly trapping the dangerous Hovey on the crease for just 2 runs, before having Dawling caught first ball excellently by Graham in the slips, and finally catching Heather on the crease for 16; a huge wicket for Grinstead, leaving Middleton 39-3. Meanwhile Robinson had been battling through a tough spell from Hatchett and Will Taylor who bowled with real venom and accuracy up the hill, but he gave his wicket away cheaply by chipping Taylor to Adkin at mid-wicket for 25. This meant Rawat came to the crease with averaging over 150 in the league currently. On a flat wicket, Grinstead struggled to dismiss him, but did well to contain and restrict the boundaries. Hatchett for once didn’t manage to find much turn, but still troubled Colvin’s outside edge without any luck. Thankfully Covin gave away his wicket chipping Hatchett to deep mid wicket; Haynes taking a good low catch.
At 216-6, Middleton looked set for 250 with just 5 overs left, and with Mahesh on 99 not out, Grinstead needed wickets to ensure bonus points and a chasable total were possible. Enter Will Adkin; Mahesh drives down the ground and takes off for a single, Adkln runs round from mid wicket and dives, pickes up in his left hand. turns and throws back at the keeper’s end from a seated position…. Run out for 99. An unbelievable piece of fielding gives Grinstead the prize wicket and a chase to take down the tail cheaply. Will Taylor had been brought back on after an excellent first spell and was finding a touch of inswing late in the day. Firstly, bowls Talman with a brilliant inswinger…. before having Davies caught behind leaving him with 4 wickets and on a hat-tric to get his first 5 wicket haul. It was meant to be! Straigfht yorker beat Lee for pace and gave Taylor 5-30 off 11 excellent overs.
Grinstead Started their pursuit of 225 well as Haynes and Adkin found the boundary with any stray bowling reaching 78 before the loss of Adkin with a good nip-backer from Heather for another well made 45. Cammish came and went after a decent off spinner found a rare gap between bat and pad for just 8. The in-form Ollie Graham found it difficult to score at first but soon found his rhythm hitting some lovely shots over mid wicket (a trademark of his). Haynes was looking good at scoring quickly keeping Middleton on the back foot as Grinstead getting nearer the target. However it wasn’t unfortunately a double Gold cap day as Haynes knicked off to Talman for an excellent 91. A wonderful innings of timing, patience and deserved runs. Graham followed in the next over chipping one back to Reynolds for a well made 38 leaving Grinstead 30 short with 6 wickets in hand. Thankfully, Rebbetts and Sturmer made light work of the 30 required, both striking the ball nicely to end on 18 and 22 not out respectively.
An excellent all round display from Grinstead saw lots of valuable contributions throughout the side and plenty of momentum to take to Cuckfield next weekend!