Steyning Cricket Club move to within 14 points of the Sussex League Division 4 promotion places following a home victory over rivals Findon on Saturday.
Starting the day in third position, Steyning’s comprehensive 88-run triumph – coupled with second-placed Slinfold’s defeat to East Grinstead 2nd XI – means they are now just 14 points off second spot with eight games gone this season.
Steyning skipper David Kennett elected to bat and half-centuries from Johnny Burfiend (73), Gary Hunt (65 not out) and opener Hywel Jones (56) ensured they amassed 269-5 declared off 46 overs.
Findon faced an uphill struggle to either save the game or pull off an unlikely run chase and so it proved.
Jones followed up his half-century by taking four wickets, then Munowar Samsodien, Christopher Barnett and Andy Isaacs weighed in with two wickets apiece to skittle Findon out for 181 in reply.
Steyning skipper Kennett was quick to applaud his team’s efforts with both bat and ball following the win and said: “Saturday was a great team performance. We were brilliant with both bat and ball.
“Hywel (Jones) and Nick (Colley) were brilliant at the top of the order, then both Johnny (Burfiend) and Gary (Hunt) were brilliant in the middle overs.
“Johnny’s quickfire 70-odd meant we were able to declare early with a big score on the board and have extra overs at Findon, if required.
“With the ball, Hywel was yet again very good, taking out their top four and he was well backed up by the other bowlers.”
Colley (34) and Jones (56) shared an opening-wicket stand of 83 to provide Steyning with a perfect platform.
Oliver Collins struck 25, while Bartholomew Poyser (13) came and went before Burfiend and Hunt put on 115 for the fifth-wicket.
Burfiend eventually fell for 73, while Hunt ended the innings unbeaten on 65 as Kennett called time after 46 overs with his team on 269-5.
Findon were in all sorts of trouble in reply, losing openers Bradley Bridson (15) and Curtis Howell (four), then number three Jon Flower (two) cheaply to leave wobbling.
Innings top-scorer James Henman (33), Alex Norman (29), Glenn Bridson (25) and James Ballamy (28) tried to get them back on track but they fell well short, eventually being bundled out for 181 from 40.1 overs.
Steyning know a win at place-above Slinfold on Saturday will be enough to see them move into the promotion places.
Kennett added: “Saturday is a must-win game for us. We played Goring earlier in the season and knew a win would put us in a promotion position but we buckled under pressure.
“This time I’ll be hoping for a better response from the guys and hopefully get the win to put us in second.”
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