CURRENT champions Hastings Priory continue to lead the Sussex Premier League after enjoying their fifth outright win of the season.
Preston Nomads, champions for the previous three seasons lie in second place, they, too, have won five games. Third-placed Roffey suffered their first defeat of the season at home to East Grinstead.
Horsham enjoyed a comfortable win at home to Bexhill to consolidate fourth place whilst the battle at the bottom saw Eastbourne win for the first time this season in their away game at Worthing.
Another fine innings from Kirk Werners set up Hastings for a convincing home win against Chichester. The young Sussex all-rounder made 109 not out as Hastings were dismissed for 195.
John Morgan made 38 as Aussie Adam Zampa grabbed 4 for 78.
Morgan then stepped up with the ball to take 7 for 38 and with Werners taking 3 for 16 the visitors crashed to 59 all out.
Joe Gatting used his day off from county duties to whack a 63-ball century to take Preston Nomads to victory by four wickets at home to Brighton and Hove.
Brighton were bowled out for 198 despite 76 from Craig Young and 31 from Tim Jarvis, Carl Simon taking 5 for 39.
Gatting then hit 106 despite being dropped a costly three times. Rob Wakeford added 35 not out as Chris Liddle and Matt Wood each took two wickets.
Another Sussex youngster proved the match winner for East Grinstead at Roffey.
Will Adkin carried his bat for 86 not out as Grinstead made 176 for 6 facing a Roffey score of 175 for 6 declared.
For Roffey, Michael Norris made 44 and Christ Plaister 32 as Craig Fowle took 4 for 62.
Adkin was dropped twice early in his innings but played a mature innings to see his side home despite drizzle and poor light for much of the time.
Andy McGorian and Stuart Whittingham each took two wickets for the home side.
Bexhill are finding life in the Premier League a tough battle after their promotion last year.
At Horsham they were dismissed for 138 despite 31 from skipper Malcolm Johnson and 26 from Tom Powell. Two leg spinners did the damage, Michael Munday taking 3 for 39 and Will Beer 2 for 21.
In reply, Horsham cruised to 142 for 2 in just 25 overs as James Johnson made 60 not out and John Burroughs 40.
The Sussex success story continued as Luke Wells made 130 for Eastbourne at Worthing to take his side to their first win of the season.
Eastbourne looked in trouble at 30 for 3 but Aaron Mullins (55) joined Wells to rebuild the innings, Luke Vinter took 3 for 55 for Worthing.
Worthing then tumbled to 112 all out as Ed Giddins took 4 for 28.
Three Bridges continue to lead Division 2 by 21 points despite being held to a draw at Findon.
Bridges were dismissed for 168 as Jack Metters took 4 for 31.
Mick Demetriou then held the Findon innings together as they reached stumps at 132 for 8, he made 76.
Glynde, who finished third last season, are currently in second place following a six wicket win at Haywards Heath who they bowled out for 145.
In that total Ollie Graham top scored with 32 as Dale Tranter took 3 for 62.
Glynde them moved smoothly to 146 for 4 with 49 from Dominic Shepheard and 35 not out from Ollie Bailey.
St James’s lie third following their draw at Cuckfield where the home side made 209 with a hard hit 48 from Jamie Newson as George Taylor took 5 for 42.
In the visitors’ 189 for 8 Adam Davies made 31 as Ebrel Erwee took 4 for 60.
Ifield found it very easy at home to Sidley who they bowled out for just 122. Sam Steel was top scorer, he made 25 as Dan Groves took 3 for 36.
Raza Alli with 51 not out and Jovan Nel (53) took the home side to victory by nine wickets at 123 for 1.
Goring made short work of dismissing Pulborough for just 94 as Ellis Woolley took 4 for 19 and Matt Keen 4 for 34.
The home side then won by five wickets at 85 for 5 with 27 from Dan Pitham, Kuldeep Rawat took 3 for 43.
All league positions in Division 3 West remain unchanged after each of the top five beat one of the bottom five.
Middleton’s Brandon Hanley enjoyed a fine all round game top scoring with 69 in their 218-9. Ben Hansford added 56 whilst Slinfold’s Guy Thorne took 4-68.
In reply, Slinfold were blown away for just 50 as Hanley’s 4-28 was surpassed by Tom Davies who took 6-17.
Bognor remain second just three points behind after an equally resounding victory at home to Wisborough Green. The visitors were bowled out for just 89 with Elliott Clarke making 45 as Bognor won by seven wickets.
Billingshurst also scored a maximum after a four-wicket success at Arundel. Arundel’s 149 was marked by Dhanushka Mitipolaarachchi snaring 5-30 and Mike Burroughs 50 not out led them to victory.
Stirlands remain fourth after a 131-run win at Littlehampton. Sean Heather (129) also scored a personal fourth (century in succession) and, as last week was ably supported by Will Gubbins with 73 not out.
Stirlands declared on 241-4 and bowled out Littlehampton for 110 with Chris May taking 3-11.
The result left Littlehampton pointless from the game and rooted at the foot of the table.
Steyning won a relatively low scoring game at Pagham making just 144. Pagham however were knocked over for just 92 after 6-37 from Matheesha Ranasinghe.