Worthing keep alive slim promotion hopes

Andy Reid
Andy Reid
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WORTHING Cricket Club kept their faint chances of promotion from Sussex League Division 2 alive with a 35-run win at Billingshurst on Saturday.

Worthing remain in fourth place despite a fourth successive win but are now only 28 points behind second-placed Billingshurst.

After losing the toss and being put into bat, Worthing lost Matthew Green for just seven. However, Bradley James (20) and Andy Reid steadied things with a 56-run stand for the second wicket.

But Reid’s contribution of 41 was to be the best of the innings as Worthing lost regular wickets from 63-2.

Nick Ballamy made 19 from 70 balls as the visitors lost their final eight wickets for just 60 runs and were all out for 123.

Dhanushka Mitipolaa-rachchi was the pick of the Billingshurst bowlers as he took 5-49 from 17 overs, while David Dunn claimed 3-29.

With a low total to defend, Worthing needed to start well with the ball and that is what they did. Ballamy picked up both openers early on and the hosts were in trouble at 23-2.

Tim Weston (19) and Jon Alexander (21) steadied Billingshurst and they reached 71-4.

However, a batting collapse saw them lose their final six wickets for only 17 runs as they were all out for just 88. Corey Altis finished with 4-29 and Benn Challen took 3-13.

Worthing vice-captain Benn Challen was pleased with the win and said: “It was a really good win for us, especially after making the total that we did.

“We would have liked to have got a few more with the bat, but we knew a good performance with the ball would help us get over the line.

“The wicket was really dry and it was difficult to score runs but we bowled well and that helped us to get the victory in the end.”

The win sees Worthing keep alive their slim hopes of promotion, with four games left to play.

However, Challen knows his side will be relying on other results if they are to be playing in the Premier League next year.

He said: “We just have to keep winning our matches.

“With this result, we gained 20 points on Billingshurst which is good but we know that we are relying on other teams above us to slip up.

“This was a big win for us, though, and, with some big games coming up, who knows what may happen in the coming weeks.”

Worthing entertain sixth-placed Ifield on Saturday.