Horley Under-13s in the Sussex Junior Cricket Festival
Horley Under-13s had to play some tough fixtures in last week’s Sussex Festival, with matches against last year’s finalists Horsham and Cuckfield and a very strong Lingfield team.
The boys performed superbly, drawing with Horsham on Tuesday in the first match but coming so close to a win with only two runs needed off the last ball (Horsham 167-9 declared, 32.5 overs, Horley 166-8, 37 overs).
Highlights included a hat-trick from Evan Grimwood in a four-wicket haul, plus brilliant bowling from fellow paceman Edward James with three wickets of his own. Ben Ware batted at number four on his Horley debut and made a masterly 80 not out with a mixture of big hitting and sound defence.
Cuckfield came to Horley Row on Thursday and batted first, building a big total even though Horley got their strongest batsman out relatively early, the brilliant catch at mid-wicket by Jack Love giving them the start they hoped for.
Cuckfield eventually declared on 217 and left Horley 39 overs to try and beat it. Horley skipper Harry Grimwood hit a majestic 90, bravely batting on with a foot injury and came so close to bringing Horley the victory they wanted. In the end an exciting finish saw another drawn game, with Joe English and Jack Love surviving the last over surrounded by the Cuckfield fielders, seeking the elusive last wicket, as Horley finished on 203-9.
Lingfield away on Friday ended with the game being abandoned due to rain, but only after Love made headlines again with his first ever half-century, hitting a quick-fire 60 in response to Lingfield's 170 all out. Under-11 player Aidan Spalding took two wickets and Tim Holt only gave away one run in his speedy three-over spell. At 84-2 when the rain stopped play, Horley were in a strong position but the win they so richly deserved over the three matches proved elusive.
Horley Under-13s bounced back from two disappointing defeats to win their last match in the Sussex Junior Cricket Festival Under-13s Shield and finish the week ninth out of 14 teams.
The victory came against Burgess Hill and was the result of a great all-round team performance in the field.
Horley put Burgess Hill in and Alex Field struck twice in his opening spell, bowling Kyle Jones for one and trapping Alfie Lees lbw for four.
Burgess Hill number three Conor Ward was their star batter on the day, making a patient and dogged 51 from 67 balls while wickets fell regularly at the other end. None of his team-mates got into double figures as Horley’s bowlers shared the wickets with Luke Newton claiming two – his first for the club – and Leah Lane, Will Agombar, Ben Stewart, Joseph Barton and Henry Grimwood taking one each and Field claiming a third.
Joe English took a terrific diving catch off Agombar to dismiss Ward and end the Burgess Hill innings on 84 all out after 21.1 overs.
Horley knew they had a lot of overs to chase down the total but Burgess Hill had some good bowlers, so Horley took their time. Opener Evan Grimwood top-scored with 20 from 27 balls, number three Joseph Marshall made 15 not out and saw Horley home with Field, who ended up on 14 not out in the total of 86 for three from 21.3 overs.
It was good for Horley to end the week with a win, as they had been well beaten on the first two days of the festival when several of their regular players were unavailable and they had to call on the best of the talent from the club’s under-11s and 10s, as well as the under-12s who usually play in this team.
On day one, Horley faced Lindfield – who went on to be losing finalists – and were bowled out for 116 in 30.1 overs, with Harry Grimwood top-scoring with 29. Field made 12 and Luke Smith and Hugo Hobbs 11 apiece, but no one else reached double figures.
Lindfield made the reply look easy, making 119 for the loss of just one wicket (bowled by Harry Grimwood), in 18.3 overs. When Lindfield bowled out Steyning for just 17 later in the week, Horley might have felt a little better about their performance!
Horley’s second match was against Barns Green and once again they were put in to bat, this time making 115 all out from 32.2 overs. Smith top-scored with 25, Agombar made a feisty 19, Marshall 18 and Evan Grimwood 14.
Bailey Warren picked up an early wicket in the reply and Evan Grimwood removed the other opener, but Barns Green made 119 for two from 19.4 overs to win easily.
The third match was rained off, and for the last day Horley had a stronger squad available and were delighted to finish the week on a high at Burgess Hill.
Horley Under-13s 133-7 (20 overs), Oxted and Limpsfield Under-13s 194-5 (20 overs). Oxted won by 61 runs.
Horley, who were top of the table, went into this match against the second-placed side knowing that the winners would win the league.
What they didn’t know at that stage was that Oxted included several players in their team who had played in the county-wide Surrey Invitational League this season and – in this key game - were making their first appearances at the much lower, East Surrey League level.
Horley soon realised they were facing players of a different class as Oxted opted to bat and lashed the ball to all parts of the ground, making a league record 195 for five from their 20 overs.
Bailey Warren took three wickets, one caught by Ben Stewart, one caught by Will Agombar and one a caught and bowled.
Harry Grimwood clean bowled Oxted skipper Jack Brown for a duck and Alex Field got a run-out, but the only maiden of the 20 overs was bowled by Evan Grimwood as three Oxted batsmen reached the retirement mark of 30 - Felix Curson (33 from 13 balls), Ethan Whenman (32 from 12 balls) and Raffy Pearce (33 from 25 balls).
Horley knew they were unlikely to chase down such a huge total, but they still managed to make what, in any other match, would be a decent score of 133, and this time against a much better class of bowling.
Harry Grimwood made 32 from 33 balls, including five fours, Stewart was not out 22 (two fours), Agombar made 14 (three fours), Hugo Hobbs 13 and Leah Lane 12 (two fours each).
Horley’s league season is finished and Oxted have one more game. As long as they turn up and claim the minimum one point they will be champions, but Horley have made a great improvement this year after finishing seventh last season and couldn’t have done more against a players who normally play two tiers above them.
Sutton Challengers Under-13s 133-7 (20 overs) Horley Under-13s 136-5 (20 overs)
Horley Under-13s won their penultimate game of the league season and will be crowned champions if they can beat Oxsted and Limpsfield next Sunday.
Horley put Sutton in to bat and opening bowlers Leah Lane and Alex Field both took a wicket to dismiss the openers.
Luke Smith took the third wicket, with Evan Grimwood taking the catch, to put Sutton on 42 for three, but the home side then enjoyed a partnership of 45 from 5.3 overs, which ended when Lane caught Ritvik Gupta for 28 from Udith Molanguri’s bowling.
Molanguri clean bowled the next batter in the same over, but runs were still coming quite freely. Lane took another catch, this time off Will Hofmann – an under-11 playing his first game for the under-13s - and Joseph Marshall got a wicket-keeper’s run-out in the 18th over – his third in recent matches.
Sutton had a total of 133 to defend and only nine fielders. After Lane fell in the second over, her fellow opener Hugo Hobbs put on a partnership of 55 from 39 balls with Field, who was bowled for 22 (13 balls).
Marshall joined Hobbs, who was out two overs later for 19, including a big six. Tommy McKenna and Marshall enjoyed a partnership of 17 in three overs then Molanguri came in when McKenna was out and took on the bowlers, hitting a big six off a no ball.
By the time Marshall was run out for 14, Horley were on 123 so Grimwood didn’t have much to do, and Molanguri took Horley to victory, finishing on 26 not out from 20 balls.
This was Horley’s eighth win in nine league matches.
British Tamils Cricket League Surrey Academy 140-5 (20 overs), Horley Under-13s 187-3 (20 overs). Horley won by 47 runs.
Horley Under-13s scored the highest total of any team in their league this season and moved up to second place in the division, three points behind unbeaten leaders Oxted and Limpsfield.
In a real run-fest, Horley hit 26 of the total of 45 boundaries which were struck across a lightning-fast outfield.
Udith Molanguri hit the first ball for four to begin an opening partnership of 68 with Alex Field. The second over went for 21, with Field hitting four boundaries and the run-rate remained high until Molanguri was out lbw for 29 from 20 balls (six fours).
Soon afterwards, Field retired on 31 not out (22 balls, seven fours).
After Leah Lane fell to a terrific low catch, Bailey Warren and Luke Smith put together a fine partnership, with Smith retiring on 31 from 25 balls (six fours). Will Agombar joined Warren at the crease and he scored a quick 17 from 11 balls before being caught.
Evan Grimwood, as he has a few times this season, wasted no time in the last few balls of the innings to add eight to the total and Warren was left on 27 not out from 26 balls.
With 187 on the board – easily this Horley team’s best-ever total – they were confident of going on to win the game, but BTCL attacked from the off and kept up with the run-rate in the first half of the innings.
Their opener retired on 32, then Agombar took the first wicket in the ninth over, bowling the other opener for 27.
Agombar had his second wicket, again clean bowled, in his next over and at the end of the 11th over, the scores were exactly the same, 101-2.
Hugo Hobbs came on to bowl the 12th over and took the third wicket, with Field taking the catch. BTCL’s best three batters were now all out of the game and Horley were able to apply some pressure. The final nine overs only went for 39 runs, thanks to good bowling from Luke Newton, Smith, Joseph Barton and Taylor Brooks, who only conceded a total of 15 runs from the four overs they shared.
Field and Lane took a wicket apiece in their final overs and Molanguri finished off the innings.
On a day that favoured the batters, Horley’s bowling was very good, with only four wides and one no-ball. Mention must also go to Evan Grimwood who volunteered to keep wicket when Warren was struggling with a headache after his long innings in the heat.
Horley Under-13s 79-1 (7.5 overs), Reigate Priory Under-13s 77-7 (20 overs). Horley won by nine wickets.
Just 24 hours later, at the same venue, Horley strolled to victory over a Priory team consisting of only nine players, all of whom were under-12s.
Horley’s line-up included five under-12s and one under-11, but they were far too strong for Priory and the match was never a contest.
Leah Lane opened the bowling with a maiden and while Alex Field conceded more runs at the other end, he took the first wicket with a caught and bowled.
Udith Molanguri clean bowled the other Reigate opener and Joe English clean bowled batters three and four, dismissing the first from the last ball of his first over – a maiden – and the second from the first ball of his second.
Joseph Barton took the fifth wicket in the 14th over, clean bowled, and Bailey Warren matched him in the next over. Molanguri picked up his second wicket in the final over.
With only 77 to chase down, Horley were hot favourites to win and Evan Grimwood and English – both under-12s players – were chosen to open and attacked from the start.
Grimwood played a terrific innings and retired not out on 32 from 17 balls, including seven boundaries. English ended up on 20 not out (12 balls) and Will Agombar, playing his first match for Horley, helped him see the team home, striking three confident fours to finish on 12 not out.
Horley Under-13s 140-9 (20 overs), Dorking Under-13s 90-3 (20 overs). Horley won by 50 runs.
Horley Under-13s enjoyed a great weekend, winning two league matches on two consecutive days to move up to third in the league table, with a game in hand on second-placed Lingfield.
Against Dorking in the first game, Horley were put in and lost both openers cheaply to catches by Patrick Simmonite off Callum Powell in the second over.
The new batsmen, Alex Field and Bailey Warren, successfully started the innings again, batting well together for a partnership of 52 from 44 balls.
Warren was caught for 14 from 17 balls, then there was a mini collapse with three wickets lost in consecutive balls, including Field, bowled for 19 (23 balls).
Horley were 66-6 after 11 overs, then 67-7 an over later, so batting out the remaining eight overs became a priority. Leah Lane and Joe English rose to the occasion and put on Horley’s best partnership of 54 from 36 balls. Lane was caught for 19 from 17 balls and English was caught in the final over, having scored 20 from 18 balls.
Joseph Marshall and Evan Grimwood finished the innings, with Grimwood hitting three boundaries from his five balls faced.
Dorking made a good start in reply, scoring 21 in four overs, but then Udith Molanguri joined the attack with a wicket maiden. English bowled a maiden in the next over and as this included a direct hit run-out from Field, Dorking were 21-2.
Powell and Sebastian Fleming-Smith then put together the biggest partnership of the match, scoring 59 runs from 61 balls. Fleming-Smith retired on 33 not out, then Hugo Hobbs took the third wicket in the 16th over.
Horley were well and truly in the driving seat with Dorking needing 61 from the last four overs. English took the fifth wicket, caught by Field, before Marshall pulled off a smart run-out from behind the sticks, spotting that the batsman had stepped out of his crease.
Molanguri bowled Powell in the final over to leave Dorking well short on 90.
Lingfield Under-13s 134-2 (20 overs), Horley Under-13s 107-6 (20 overs). Lingfield won by 27 runs.
With a few players missing on Sussex duty, and some debutants from the under-12s replacing them, Horley were unable to make it four league wins out of four this season and lost to a good Lingfield side.
Leah Lane gave Horley a good start when Lingfield were put in as she had Surrey Under-12s player Arthur Thilo well caught by Evan Grimwood for just seven.
However, the next two batters, Harrison Stewart and Jacob Henderson both retired on 31 and 30 respectively and Lingfield were building a big total.
Smart work by keeper Joseph Marshall saw Aaron Hockey stumped off Edward James’s bowling but Horley conceded a disappointing 44 extras in Lingfield’s good total of 134.
Udith Molanguri started Horley’s reply with a fine four but was then caught. Grimwood and Joseph Barton put together a partnership of 38 for the second wicket, but scoring was not easy on a poorly maintained outfield. Grimwood went for 18 and Taylor Brooks swiftly followed before Barton was run out for ten.
Horley had fallen behind the required run rate and needed ten an over from the last eight. Alex Field did his best to move things along and hit three fine fours in his 17 from 18 balls before he was bowled by Stewart.
Leah Lane made a decent 11 and was not out, alongside Marshall, when the innings closed.
Banstead Under-13s 104-7 (20 overs), Horley Under-13s 105-4 (19.3 overs). Horley won by five wickets.
Horley Under-13s made it three wins from three in the league this season by restricting Banstead to a low total.
Horley fielded first and Evan Grimwood, Tommy McKenna and Jack Love took a wicket each, while Ben Stewart accounted for two batters with a caught-and-bowled and a runout.
Udith Molanguri took two for seven from his three overs, including a catch for McKenna, while Leah Lane conceded just two runs off the bat in her three overs.
Skipper Molanguri opened the batting for Horley and retired on 30 not out, while Grimwood made 18 and Stewart 13.
Joseph Marshall ended up on ten not out as Horley made it home with three balls to spare.
Horley Under-13s played at Newdigate twice in two days, once in round one of the East Surrey Colts League Cup and once in the league. Honours were shared with Newdigate progressing in the knockout competition but Horley claiming the league points.
The cup game was extremely high-scoring, with Newdigate making a daunting 156-4 from their 20 overs and Horley rising to the challenge but falling just short with 151-3.
Horley made a good start in the field with Joe English clean bowling Scott Bloomfield, then taking a catch from Bailey Warren’s bowling in the eighth over. Ben Stewart took a wicket in the ninth and another in the 11th with Tommy McKenna taking the catch.
This left Newdigate at 54 from 11 overs but then their best batters began to pepper the boundaries. George McLoughlin retired on 31 and Thomas Clark on 30, while Oliver Brien made 24 as the home side put on 102 in the last nine overs.
This Horley team has never had to chase down a bigger total, but after losing one early wicket a second-wicket partnership of 91 by Harry Grimwood and Alex Field gave them a real chance.
Grimwood retired on 30 from 27 balls and Field was bowled for 28, which included his first ever six as his first scoring shot of the day.
Horley continued to keep up with the demanding run rate and had wickets in hand. Stewart was their top-scorer, retiring on 32 from 30 balls, including five fours. Warren made 19 before being bowled in the final over and Newdigate hung on to win.
The following day the two teams were back again, with some different faces on both sides. This time Horley bowled the home side out for 109 in 18.2 overs and passed that total in just 15.4 overs for a comfortable, seven-wicket league win.
Wickets for Evan Grimwood, Field, Hugo Hobbs, Leah Lane and three for Udith Molanguri had Newdigate in trouble at 37 for seven but their tail wagged, with Brien scoring 31 before retiring and Bloomfield 17.
Horley went about their reply steadily and without taking risks. Molanguri and Evan Grimwood put on 35 for the first wicket before the former was out for 13. Evan Grimwood went on to get 30 and retire, hitting four fours on the way, while Lane made 13, Joseph Marshall 12 not out and Joseph Barton 11 not out.
HCC Match Reports