Horley 2nd XI maintained their 21-point lead at the top of the league with a win over Godalming.
Horley skipper Darren Croft put the visitors in on a green and wet wicket and his opening bowlers bowled tight lines, with Matt Puttick moving the ball away and Chris Cosham angling it in.
The breakthrough came with Puttick dismissing Dominic Coakley for two, caught behind by Andrew Thomas, and Puttick claimed the next two wickets to make the score 50 for 3 after 18 overs. Aryan Patel joined the attack with his leg breaks, working well in tandem with Croft’s off breaks at the other end. Pressure accumulated until 15-year-old Patel picked up three wickets, two caught by Puttick and one caught and bowled. Croft took one wicket, caught by Andrew Burbidge.
The last change in bowlers saw Jonathan Barnett come on and he cleaned up the remaining batsmen quickly, taking three wickets in 3.3 overs, including Godalming’s top scorer Nigel Churaman (39), caught by Zack Collins. Godalming were all out for 125.
Horley’s reply opened with the expansive Barnett and 15-year-old Christian Kelly getting stuck into the Godalming bowlers. With some excellent running between the wickets and lovely cover drives and pull shots, the pair raced to 45, when unfortunately, Kelly pulled at one too many and was caught and bowled by Finn Bickerdike.
Burbidge came in looking determined to see his side home but a few overs later, with another 13 runs on the board, Barnett took on a big shot and was bowled by Bickerdike for 44.
Thomas joined Burbidge and the pair built an excellent 66-run partnership, taking Horley to 124, with just one run needed for victory.
Mild panic ensued as Thomas was caught for 38 trying to hit the winning runs. With the batters having crossed, Burbidge was now on strike and he too was caught off the next ball, having made 27.
Now Ashley Yeo had to face the hat-trick ball from Oscar Roberts and he survived that, then Collins – like Patel and Kelly, a member of the club’s under-15s side – hit the winning runs for Horley in the next over.