Bognor battered poor Pagham in their first derby of the season in division three west.
It was contested on a slow, low and damp wicket. After winning a vital toss, Bognor’s bowlers took advantage of the conditions, bowling the opposition out for just 73.
Led from the front by skipper Elliott Clarke, Bognor chased down the modest total with relative ease.
Bognor’s new overseas player, Sam Taylor, comfortably settled into his league debut with economical figures of two for nine, partnering the ever-reliable Graham Bush (2-14) to put the Pagham top order under pressure. The opening bowlers had to be patient in their pursuit of the first wicket, as Will Rolls (8) and Kegel Tyson (10) proved a stubborn combination for Pagham, adding 27 before Tyson chipped to James Fallick at point.
Bush and Taylor claimed two more wickets before Jim Lee (4-22) was introduced into the attack, striking with successive deliveries as his consistency of line was rewarded.
Wayne Green (19) provided the home side with some resistance, counter-attacking with extravagant shots, but he fell to Charlie La Foret (2-11) leaving Pagham at 55 for six.
Lee and La Foret continued to work in tandem as Pagham wickets fell at regular intervals, with Luke Seward and Max Ashmore claiming laudable catches. Australian Taylor was reintroduced, claiming the final wicket of Billy Turner-Hogg.
Bognor’s chase suffered an early setback as Ashmore was dismissed in the second over for just two. However, Clarke (58*), supported by Rob Willway (15*), produced a magnificent run-a-ball 50 to guide his side to victory.
Despite early pressure from Mike Hales (0-14) and Richard Bird (1-17), the Bognor pair overcame difficult conditions with some eye-catching strokes, from Clarke in particular. Willway proved persistent, while Clarke led the attack to Pagham, ending with a boundary.
Bognor could not have dreamed for a better start and hope to continue the momentum this week against Steyning. Pagham will be trying to regroup in time for a trip to face early league leaders Arundel.
* Summer finally came to the Regis Oval for a local derby between Bognor and Pagham’s seconds.
Bognor elected to field and early strikes from Josh Broad (2-35) held Pagham back. Scoring was proving difficult and Bognor regularly took wickets, with Mikey Wake (2-26) and Joe Ashmore (2-22) stemming the flow of runs.
A well-paced 67 from Pagham’s Sam Dickins kept the score moving along with support from Nikki Tabberer (21no) but late wickets from veteran seamer Rich Cox (2-41) saw Pagham end on 147 for eight.
Bognor had a nightmare start, slipping to 26 for four and then 49 for five. The innings was held together by young Mikey Harris (21) and Broad (28) but regular strikes by Thomas Kent (3-23), Peter Cotterill (3-32) and Nikki Tabberer (3-23) saw Bognor subside to 102 all out, Pagham winning by 45 runs.