Following heavy showers early in the morning Rye’s 1st XI took to the field with the sun shining but with a blustery wind. Rye entertained League leaders Steyning at the Rye Cricket Salts, in a match sponsored by My Sweet Old Etcetera, and although defeat came by 7 wickets, there were still many reasons to be cheerful as the youngsters from the second team experienced personal success against a Steyning team who relied on an incredible one-man performance by Owain Jones, of almost Bothamesque proportions.
Rye won the toss and batted first and suffered initially at the hands of Owain Jones as he accounted for 5 batsmen as Rye succumbed to 53-6, including three ducks. Previously this season Rye’s tail has failed to wag, but this week the young guns up from the seconds offered a resilient fightback. Ben Clifton 42 and Joe Lovell 23 took the score to 92 before Lovell fell, but Clifton offered further resistance with Gary Willis 21 as they took the score to 141, before the final pair of Harry Smeed 15* and Craig Pierce 5* saw Rye to 172-9, using up all of the 53 overs. Owain Jones finally finished with 7-45 off 20 overs.
After tea, it was the continuing Owain Jones show as he opened the innings, and almost carried his bat through the innings as he hit 95, to be dismissed when the score was 150. He received support from Shelford 30 and Hunt 20 not out to see Steyning home to victory. It did take 38 overs to get over the winning line and once again Ben Clifton stood out with 1-22 off 7 overs to get the Gandhi Tandoori MOM award. Rye still remain in relative safety in mid table in Division 4 of the County League and it still is a learning curve.
The 2nd XI were short of regular players due to holidays and first team call ups, and were hampered by an injury to opening batsman Tim Morgan on the day of the game so Morgan supported the team by taking on the scoring role. So Rye 2nds faced Glynde 2nds with only 10 men. However, the individual performances nearly brought off an outstanding victory. Glynde won the toss and made steady progress reaching 108-2 as Warren hit 54 and Brickell 27. It was slow though due to a wicket lacking pace. Rye stuck to their task and took the pace off the ball as Nick Paine took 4-51 and Martin Blincow 3-52 as Glynde only managed to get to 196-9 in their 53 overs. 15 year old Rhys Jones led the way in the field with a great run out and a great catch on the boundary.
In reply Rye faltered on 24-2, but this brought Gandhi Tandoori MOM Jack Dudley and Spencer Fielding in a 123 run partnership which seemingly brought Rye to the edge of victory requiring 37 off 10 runs to win. But the inexperienced batting faltered once Dudley 78 and Fielding 57 were dismissed. The game then swung to Glynde who needed one wicket from the last two overs to win, but Rye resisted, sneaked 5 more runs to get another batting point as the game ended in a draw, and both teams got 12 points.
This week (Saturday August 16) Rye 1st XI travel to Portslade, the 2nd XI host Burgess Hill 2nd XI in a match sponsored by Adams of Rye, the 3rd XI entertain Buxted Park 3rd XI and the 4th XI are away to Westfield.
Photo: Tony Nunn