Roffey overcome Middleton in high-scoring thriller
At the end of a close call, nerve-wracking, victory, with two outstanding all round performances – one on each side – Roffey CC scrambled home by four runs against Middleton CC in the Premier Division after almost 500 runs had been scored at the coast on Saturday.
Roffey elected to bat and got off to a perfect start with a 146-run opening partnership, thanks to an outstanding 117 from Theo Rivers and a typically robust 76 from Usman Khan.
But, once they were out, only Matt Davies and George Fleming reached double figures, leaving Roffey, at 248-7 from their 50 over allocation, shy of the total that they had been seeking, evergreen Sean Heather taking 3-34 and Charlie Maginnis 2-35.
Heather then starred with the bat, making 103, and at 159-1 with 13 overs to get 90 and nine wickets intact, alarm bells rang for the visitors, especially with wicketkeeper Mason Robinson contributing 57.
But, Roffey kept chipping away with Rohit Jagota applying the brakes, only conceding 19 runs from his ten overs, before Rivers weighed in with 3-39.
The prolific Mahesh Rawat made an unbeaten 44, but Middleton fell frustratingly short on 244-5.
A full scorecard from the game can be found here.
Roffey skipper Davies told the County Times: “Theo and Usman batted so well, but we were 20-30 short of the target we needed.
"Our ground fielding was excellent, but dropping Sean Heather four times made life difficult for us.
"Middleton’s strong top batting line up gave us concerns, but we stayed in it and played well during their last ten overs.”
After his superb game, all-rounder Rivers added: “I hadn’t really been able to get going this season with all of the rain-affected stop starts, so it was great to be able to bat a long time, and to have the good partnership with Usman, then we had to rebuild after losing wickets.
"I thank Simon Fearnley for his excellent batting coaching, which has been most helpful to me and our other players.
"I enjoyed my first bowl of the season, and all credit to Davo for rotating the bowlers so well!”
Roffey, second in the table, eight points behind Eastbourne CC and four ahead of Three Bridges CC, return home this Saturday to welcome seventh-placed Hastings & St Leonards Priory CC.