Stirlands have yet to stir after slow start at Steyning

Stirlands had a forgettable start to the season at Steyning in division three west of the Sussex League.

After good weather throughout the week, it was raining at Steyning for the second year running.

Steyning inserted Stirlands hoping to take advantage of moisture in the pitch and overseas player Subasinghe did just this, removing Stuart Hanks and bringing Will Gubbins to the crease to join Sean Heather.

Although the ball was doing a bit and there was some invariable bounce, they were able to score freely. Heather fell lbw to Subasinghe for 13 and wickets fell regularly.

Gubbins was the only player who looked confident on a wicket that required you to go forward to combat the low bounce. He kept the runs ticking along while partners came and went.

At 54 for five, Chris May joined Gubbins and they took Stirlands to 81 before May was bowled by Owain Jones.

Jones was able to bowl full and straight and Gubbins was the only one to resist.

When Stirlands were all out for 109, Gubbins was still at the crease with 56 not out to his name. Nine of the ten wickets were bowled or lbw, which will give the batters an indication of where they need to work if they are going to post better scores in the future.

In reply, Anthony Ender and overseas star Anthony Butler beat the bat a few times but the wicket was starting to flatten. Owain Jones did the damage playing positive strokes and not really giving Stirlands a sniff.

Captain heather brought on his go-to men May and Cameron and they were able to tighten the ship a bit.

Cameron continued his fine form from last season had four chances go down in his spell of seven overs and although these chances may have not had any bearing on the result, Stirlands will have to become sharper in all aspects of their game if they are to compete for promotion this season.

Steyning knocked off the runs without losing a wicket with Jones scoring 73 not out off 81 balls.

Stirlands took no points, Steyning the full 30. They host Wisborough Green this week at Stirlands.

Stirlands 2nd v Steyning 2nd

STIRLANDS won the toss and elected to bat on a great wicket.

Both openers were scoring freely and confidently before Adam Norris was dismissed for 24. Mike Clowes was dubiously trapped lbw next ball for a duck.

Simon Everest and Matt Wyer steadied the ship before Everest fell for 18 with the score at 53 for three. Wyer and captain

James Lynch both reached 18 before poor shot execution led to their dismissals.

The pressure was on the lower order to get Stirlands to a defendable total. Resilient batting from Viner, Weinstein and Gillings got the hosts to a total of 116 all out inside 50 overs.

Stirlands knew they would have to bowl and field extremely well and captain Lynch and young Danny Graham opened the bowling for Stirlands and the desire and team spirit was for all to see.

The introduction of Joe Viner restricted the Steyning openers and after an opening stand of 59, Viner got the breakthrough for Stirlands with the wicket of Grant for 16.

Two balls later Lynch bowled Bone for 39 and there was a sense they could really get into the batting line-up. But Lynch and Viner could not get another breakthrough.

Graham made an immediate impact with the wicket of Neale for 23. But Steyning reached the total for 117 for three after 32 overs.