Horsham one wicket off victory in 'really frustrating' rain-affected draw

Tom Haines hit 95 for Horsham in their rain-affected draw with Three Bridges in the Premier Division on Saturday. All pictures by Steve Robards
Tom Haines hit 95 for Horsham in their rain-affected draw with Three Bridges in the Premier Division on Saturday. All pictures by Steve Robards

Skipper Michael Thornely couldn’t hide his frustration as Horsham’s rain-affected home game with Three Bridges in the Premier Divison on Saturday ended in a draw despite the Lions being one wicket shy of victory.

After electing to bat, Horsham were bowled out for 245 in 57.4 overs as Tom Haines blasted his way to 95.

Nick Oxley made 35 for the Lions

Nick Oxley made 35 for the Lions

In reply superb Lions bowling, particularly from Nick Oxley (4-7), had Bridges at 81-9 but the weather proved to be Three Bridges’ saviour.

After heavy rain, and with only four overs left, Mike Rose (14) and Matt Blandford (eight) blunted the hosts’ attack to grind out 95-9 off 42 overs to claim a draw.

Thornely said: “It was really frustrating. I thought we played all the cricket and deserved to win.

“Unfortunately we didn’t help ourselves. We dropped four catches which was the difference between winning and losing.

Haines goes on the attack

Haines goes on the attack

“They came away with it as if they’d won the game and we came away feeling as if we’d lost the game. At no point were they anywhere near looking like chasing our total.

“To get them to 95-9 was a good effort. We created chances to win but we just weren’t able to take them.

“It was frustrating but we are playing much better cricket than we did a month ago.”

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A 61-run opening-wicket stand from Haines and Craig Gallagher (32) got the Lions off to a good start before Gallagher fell to Adam Jones (4-41).

Thornely (52) and Haines added 106 for the second-wicket before Blandford (2-59) took Thornely.

Haines fell five-runs short of his ton as Conor Golding (4-44) claimed his wicket at 208-4.

The loss of Haines saw three wickets fall for a meagre nine runs. Oxley (35) offered resistance but the loss of his wicket at 240-8 saw Horsham add just five more runs to the total.

Horsham had Bridges at 4-1 before Golding (33) and David Winn (26) moved Bridges to 48-2.

Exquisite bowling from Haines (3-30), Jonny Whiting (2-22), and Oxley reduced Bridges to 81-9 but the weather and steely knocks from Rose and Blandford saw the game drawn.

Horsham travel to East Grinstead on Saturday and then host Rye on Sunday in the Sussex T20 Cup.