Billingshurst bat with a bang to retake top spot after Chichester Priory Park win

Division 2: Billingshurst v Lindfield. Paul Osbourne. Pic Steve Robards SR1911398 SUS-190505-220330001
Division 2: Billingshurst v Lindfield. Paul Osbourne. Pic Steve Robards SR1911398 SUS-190505-220330001

Billingshurst captain Ben Williams got the batting response he asked for as they secured a routine eight-wicket win at home to Chichester Priory Park on Saturday.

Having suffered their first defeat of season in Division 2 the previous week, a maximum 30-point win at Jubilee Fields this week lifted them back into top sport.

Williams had commented after their St James’ loss that he wanted an improved display with the bat from his players – and that certainly came to fruition on Saturday.

In fact, it was a good show with bat and ball. Having bowled Chichester out for 94 in 30 overs they eased home in just 15.5 overs with 95-2.

Openers Louis Storey (25) and Jordan Willoughby (50*) put on 73 for the first wicket and while Stuart Barber was stumped without any extra runs being added, a quickfire 18 not out by Josh Wood saw the hosts home.

Williams said: “We put in a solid effort this week. Chichester were missing a couple to be fair to them but we capitalised on that.

“Andy Barr bowled with pace up top and got rid of the openers. Then, myself and Paul Osborne built up pressure with dot balls and forced a few mistakes, Paul bowled two fantastic balls to nick off their overseas and Jay Hartard.

“Then with the bat, Jordan Willoughby looked fluent in his first 50 for the club. He is a class batsman and I feel he’ll be huge in the last two thirds of the season now he’s settled in.

“Louis Storey played the supporting role and has looked fantastic in the early part of the season too, a big score will be just round the corner for Louis.

“Then Josh Wood hit cleanly to finish it off with 18 off seven balls.”

Having won the toss and made the decision to bat, just three Chichester players made double figures.

Matthew Bennison (40), Abhishek Raut (19) and Joe Nichols (12) were those three, but in the face of some brilliant bowling the rest of the order faltered.

Osborne and Williams were the pick of the bowlers in terms of wickets claiming 4-23 and 4-11 respectively, while Barr had claimed 2-11.

Billingshurst lead the table by 15 points after second placed St James’ drew against Lindfield.

Williams added: “We go to Bognor next week where Ben Mortimer will be skipper as I am at a wedding.”