Rye travelled to Henfield on Saturday looking to make it four wins from four in Division Four of the Sussex Premier Cricket League. Rye won the toss and elected to field first on what was a wet wicket after the rain the day before. An early breakthrough came with Kshemal Waingankar dismissing Adam Scott for 8, giving Rye a sense of the possibility of inducing yet another batting collapse. However, a good partnership between Harry Stewart (22) and Tom Paine (15) steadied the ship for Henfield as they moved the score along to 49 for 1 before Craig Pierce (4 for 33) removed the former and induced a mini collapse in the middle of the innings.
This collapse reduced Henfield from 49 for 1 to 74 for 7, and put Rye in a position where they felt that they would be batting before tea for a second week in a row. However, this was not to be, and at this juncture the fixture took a turn for the worse for Rye who up until this point in the campaign had found their time in the field somewhat straightforward. Some excellent batting from Jack Parson (72 not out) and William Culver (48) rescued the innings for Henfield and enabled them to post a more than competitive score of 209 for 9 declared. Waingankar finished with 4 for 84 with Ben Clifton bagging 1 for 51.
The Rye reply got off to a terrible start, being reduced to 24 for 5 inside ten overs. The situation did not improve as the side were skittled out for 69 inside 22 overs. The only players to make any sort of contribution were William Wheeler (10) and Ellis Hatter (11). The pick of the Henfield attack was George Stewart who picked up 7 for 17 in an excellent spell of bowling. This result proved a very sharp bump down to earth for Rye who found themselves riding high for the first three weeks of the season. They have now dropped to third in the division, but with all to play for on Saturday June 7 when they travel to top placed side Slinfold who have won four from four thus far this term.
The Rye 2nd XI hosted Burgess Hill 2nd XI in an exciting encounter last Saturday in a match sponsored by Mrs Cook. Rye skipper Martin Blincow lost the toss yet again and was invited to bat first. Gandhi Tandoori Man Of The Match Pete Thomson opened the innings and was soon into his stride elegantly placing the ball to all parts of the ground. He lost three partners and at 80-3 Rye wobbled. Joined by the elevated skipper Martin Blincow, who struck his first ball for six, the pair then dominated the innings. They put together a 98 run partnership in just 20 overs, with good shot selection and good running between the wickets, which soon deflated their opponents. However the demise of Blincow for 54 led to a mini collapse, but Pete Thomson went on to hit 110 before finally falling victim and Rye declared on 217-9 off 50 overs. Dan Maskell 3-46 the pick of the Burgess Hill bowlers.
Burgess Hill made a steady response at 3-4 runs per over, but lost wickets as Billy Blackford (2-31) and Ryan Dowdeswell (2-41) made early inroads. But from 54-4, Burgess Hill fought back through with a well-made 60 by Matt Charman. Rye took wickets, but Burgess Hill kept scoring, and the game was nip and tuck. George Digweed contributed with a tight spell, but could not achieve a breakthrough. With 12 wanted off the last two overs, Blincow took two wickets in an over, and Jack Dudley took another in the final over as Burgess Hill finished on 213-9 in 50 overs.
A great game of cricket played in a tremendous spirit, not least in part to a good wicket showing the input of the Cricket Club to the rolling and preparation of the pitch on Rye Salts. The spirit of the game was demonstrated by the understanding the Burgess Hill team showed about the picnic tea. During the previous week Rye Cricket Club had sought assurances from Rother District Council about the building regulations covering the Sidney Allnutt Pavilion prior to signing the lease on the building and at the meeting Rother decided to close the bar / upstairs areas of the pavilion until modifications were made, leaving only access at present to the changing rooms.
A follow up meeting is planned to address the outstanding issues which are the legacy of Rye United FC, previous owners of the building, but which now rebound on to Rother District Council. The key concern for Rye Cricket Club is the loss of income from the bar and any action the Sussex Premier League might take for failing to meet League guidelines.
This weekend the First Eleven travel to Slinfold, the Second Eleven host Haywards Heath in a match sponsored by The Plough Inn at Udimore, and the Third Eleven host Pett Second Eleven at Icklesham. On Monday the U11A team are home to Mersham Hawks, and the U11B team travel to Kennington. The U15s are home to Great Chart on Tuesday, the T20 team travel to Crowborough on Wednesday, the U13s host Mersham on Thursday, and the U17s host Kennington on Friday.