Five-wicket haul for Patel on mixed day for Horley CC

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Horley Cricket Club's three Saturday men's teams produced a tie, a win and a defeat, while Danny Patel took five wickets for the 3rd XI.

Horley 1st XIhad to settle for a rare tie in their Surrey Championship Division Five clash with Egham.

With both teams finishing in the top half of the table last year, it promised to be exciting game and it didn’t disappoint. Horley skipper Charlie Robins won the toss at Horley Row and elected to bat.

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With a few regulars absent from the Horley lineup, Regan Derham found a new opening partner in the shape of Ben Stewart. They both got off to a steady start, seeing Horley through the first ten overs without any loss. However, that would soon change. Egham’s opening bowlers weren’t finding any luck, so their captain threw the ball to Adrian Griesel (1-18) and in his first over he had Derham caught behind for 27.

Danny Patel took a five-wicket haul for Horley thirds | Picture supplied by Kieran ChildsDanny Patel took a five-wicket haul for Horley thirds | Picture supplied by Kieran Childs
Danny Patel took a five-wicket haul for Horley thirds | Picture supplied by Kieran Childs

CP Singh joined Stewart at the crease and although he was scoring at a run a ball, his stay wouldn’t be as long as the previous weeks. Matthew Cooper (1-43) took the big wicket of Horley’s top run-scorer for 13 with a smart return catch off his own bowling.

Benjamin Davies strolled to the crease with the score 71-2 in the 19th over, knowing he had to consolidate, with Egham now having their tails up. Both Stewart and Davies accumulated runs where they could, and even though neither looked fluent on a track that seemed slightly two paced, the second 50 partnership of the innings was brought up in the 30th over.

Disaster soon struck for Horley though. After having just survived a runout scare, at the start of the 32nd over, both batsmen found themselves at the same end, with Stewart being the unfortunate man to lose his wicket for 56 (seven fours).

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Milen Gogev (1-37) and returning opener Dan Telford (2-44) tried to halt Horley’s progression and picked up the wickets of Luke Smith and Matt Ware. Will Hamilton (2-39) then claimed the crucial scalp of Davies, clean bowling him for 58 after Davies tried to come down the track to him, leaving Horley on 192-6.

One run later, Hamilton found his second, as like Cooper earlier, he took a smart return catch to dismiss Will Taylor. Guy Derham (14) and Adam Stephenson (15 not out) helped Horley past 200 with some lusty blows in the remaining four overs and even though Telford made sure Derham made the walk back to the clubhouse, Stephenson, with the help of Irfaan Baksh, saw Horley up to 226-8 off their 50 overs.

Horley were looking to get stuck into the Egham top order and get them behind the rate as early as possible, but Nigel Hepponstall (28) and Gogev (57) were looking immovable at the crease in the early overs.

Their 50 partnership came up in the 13th over and with both batsmen still looking very comfortable, skipper Robins (1-20) brought himself into the attack. He put a squeeze on the scoring, meaning Horley could start to build a bit of pressure and this paid off in the 23rd over, with Hepponstall trying to clear the infield and finding Smith at mid-on, who took a good catch down low off Robins.

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Drinks were taken two overs later, with Egham 94-1 and still in control of this chase. Stephenson (1-26) had been bowling in tandem with Robins before the break and with the first ball after drinks, he went full stretch to his left to take an incredible caught and bowled to remove Gogev.

Horley now felt like they were in the ascendancy with two new batsmen at in the middle. Dane Gilmour and Will Hamilton were making sure to take their time and Egham were helped in their pursuit of 226 by some uncharacteristically bad fielding from Horley, giving them three sets of four overthrows, which dented the home team’s confidence.

As the game entered its final stages, Gilmour and Hamilton had got the equation down to 31 needed from 30 balls.

Tight bowling from Davies, Taylor and Guy Derham made sure there weren’t any boundaries off the final five overs but some good, even if slightly reckless, running from both batsmen meant the game went down to the final over with Egham needing nine to win.

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Guy Derham was given the unenviable task of bowling that over. With only singles and one two taken from the first five balls, three off the final ball was needed for the win.

Both batsmen pushed hard and with a slightly wayward throw, Hamilton made his ground to finish on 78 not out and celebrated, thinking they’d won, only to be told by the Horley players that in fact it was a draw. Gilmour was 45 not out.

Horley are second in the league after taking ten points for the draw and will travel to top of the league Alleyn next weekend.

Horley 2nd XI secured their fourth consecutive win in Surrey 2nd XI Premier Division, beating Merrow by 84 runs to remain joint top of the table with Croydon.

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Horley were put in on a challenging wicket. The start was less than ideal, with the team struggling at 47-4. However, a resilient knock from Dan Sired, who scored 20 off 61 balls, helped stabilise the innings.

The standout performance came from skipper Jon Barnett, who played a crucial innings, amassing 89 runs and striking three sixes and nine fours, providing the backbone of Horley's total. Contributions from Liam Adams (15) and Ollie Millard (26) added vital runs, allowing Horley to post a competitive total of 183-7 from 45 overs.

Horley’s bowlers delivered a stellar performance to defend that total. Oscar Hofmann and Trevor Stevens set the tone with the new ball, taking 2-29 and 3-14 respectively.

Their early breakthroughs were instrumental in putting Merrow on the back foot. Ryan Smith continued the pressure with a tidy spell, claiming 2-20. Barnett and Will Hofmann chipped in with a wicket each, with Barnett returning figures of 1-2 and Hoffmann 1-3. The bowlers were well-supported by excellent fielding, which ensured Merrow were bowled out for just 99 runs.

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This dominant performance keeps Horley unbeaten, showcasing their strong form early in the season. Next Saturday they are at home to fourth-placed Alleyn 2nd XI.

A five-wicket haul from Danny Patel couldn’t stop Horley 3rd XI from slipping up against Southwater 3rd XI in Sussex Division 11 West (North), losing by 24 runs at Copthorne.

Horley lost the toss and were fielding and opening bowlers Alex Field and Joey Wildman started brilliantly, bowling attacking lines and going for few runs. Wildman was first to pick up a wicket, with Field taking the catch, then Wildman took a further two wickets, with both catches being taken by Artie Hoskins.

Southwater fought back slowly but Horley kept chipping away at their order with Field deservedly taking a wicket, caught by Jack Poplett. Wildman finished his spell on 3-22 from nine overs with Field taking 1-20 from his nine.

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Skipper Kieran Childs brought himself and Patel into the attack and Patel was quick to get on the board with Jack James taking the catch to reduce Southwater to 76-5. Ellis Thorne showed signs of life for the visitors, scoring a crucial 21, including two fours and one six before being bowled as Patel’s next victim.

Southwater struggled to get hold of the game with Horley bowling well and Patel took a further three wickets bowling two and getting one lbw, becoming the second player to take a five-wicket haul for Horley’s Saturday league teams this season, finishing his spell with 5-34.

Horley then finished it off with Arun Gupta taking the wicket of Southwater’s skipper Darren James with Hoskins taking his third catch of the game and Southwater were all out for 132 from 39.4 overs.

Horley set off to chase the total down with Dirk Douglas and Anup Ghanshala opening the batting but Southwater got off to a great start with Thorne bowling Ghanshala with the first ball of the innings.

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Thorne then took a further two quick wickets, putting Horley firmly on the back foot at 8-3. Poplett fell next, with the score on 19, caught by William Poston from the bowling of Matt Elms, but Field began to put the pressure back on the opposition, finding the boundary with three fours before getting bowled for 17.

Childs, who was three not out when Field went, batted well, finding the boundary four times and rotating the strike nicely with Leon Watson and Arun Gupta before Elms trapped Watson lbw and Poston took the wicket of Gupta shortly after.

Patel came to the crease and he and Childs ticked it around nicely before a bad call from the skipper got Patel run out. Childs batted on, before getting caught by Theo Brown for 37.

Horley’s last two batsmen tried to push the team over the line but unfortunately it wasn’t enough and Poston took the last wicket to dismiss Horley for 108 in 25.3 overs.

Horley are second in the league table and will look to come back stronger after a poor team batting performance, when they play away v bottom placed Roffey 4th XI next Saturday.