At Fittleworth August 1st 2010
Lodsworth CC 301 for 3 declared (Graham Braithwaite 101rtd, Alfie Bunker 96 not out, Matt Hall 35, Harry Dimond 33, Nick Bellion 25 not out; R Kitchener 6 overs 2 for 39).
Fittleworth CC 144 all out (M Hamilton 38 not out, L Kitchener 24: Finn Campbell 5 overs 2 for 9, Andy Long 7 overs 2 for 13, Matt Hall 4.2 overs 2 for 16)
This was a decidedly uneven battle. Put in to bat Lodsworth gave notice of their intent with the No. 1 batsman Matt Hall (35) and the No. 3 Harry Dimond (33) pushing the score along at seven an over. The momentum was maintained when Graham Braithwaite came to the crease. After a brief period of ‘bedding in’ he proceeded to blitz the opposition with shots in all directions. He quickly made 101 before retiring whereupon the cudgels were taken up by Alfie Bunker who just missed out on a century with 96 not out, Andy Long having decided to retire at 5.00pm and coincidentally when Lodsworth passed 300. For Graham it was his maiden century for Lodsworth although he has recorded several others in his career. Nick Bellion weighed in with a steady contribution of 25 not out and Lodsworth finished with 301 for 3 in 2hrs 50 minutes, possibly their highest score ever in Sussex Rules cricket
Faced with the clearly impossible task of scoring 302 to win, Fittleworth’s strategy was immediately clear – put in the youngsters to soak up the bomarbdment and then play the battle-hardened Kitchener brothers at No. 10 and 11 to ‘shut up shop’ and settle for a draw. And it almost worked – Andy Long had for his part, decided to give all ten outfielders a chance with the ball. This was good player management on Andy’s part for it ensured everyone had a part in the victory. Finn Campbell bowled a particularly fast spell but Lodsworth almost came unstuck as the game went right down to the final over from Matt Hall. With just four balls to go Matt got an outside edge from the elder Kitchener, Harry Dimond dived full length grabbing a one handed catch and Lodsworth were home and dry. Mention must be made of some fine catches by Nick Bellion, Matt Hall, Rob Collins and Finn Campbell and of course that match winning dive by Harry.
Man of the match (again) Graham Braithwaite
Scribe Bob Powell