Cricket: West Wittering are early top dogs

West Wittering's 2013 line-up - the team have made an excellent start to the new season  Picture by Spencer Gale
West Wittering's 2013 line-up - the team have made an excellent start to the new season Picture by Spencer Gale

WEST WITTERING are top of the West Sussex Invitation League division four table after just two games after following up their opening-day victory with a win at Southwater II.

They were greeted by sunshine, high winds and a track that made their bowlers lick their lips in anticipation of a feast of wickets.

Wittering were asked to bat and Mark Taylor and Gareth Lendrum opened the innings with style, grace and a bludgeoning attack on the opening bowlers.

Lendrum (47) fell just short of his half century but his assertive play had given the visitors a great start. Taylor (26) went soon after, allowing Carl Tupper and Rob Gray to carry on with the pursuit of quick runs.

Gray failed to bother the scorers but Harry Staight and Tupper ticked over the scoreboard at a steady pace.

Tupper sand-wedged a delivery for 30, allowing James Staight the opportunity to bat with his twin.

Harry stood out with quality shots all around the ground. James fell for 11 when he looped up an easy catch.

Richard Hammond used all his tricks but on 11, he lost his middle pole, leaving Staight and Matt Jewiss to push West Wittering to the end.

Jewiss had made an unbeaten 16 and Staight was not out on 75 as West Wittering ended on 221 for six off 41.5 overs.

Wittering had an eye on the weather and James Staight and Joe Pink were given the cherry and were quickly into the top order.

With Staight spinning a magical web against the wind and Pink spearing the ball in with accuracy and pace, wickets fell on a regular basis.

Kevin Allsobrook showed his experience and a selection of bowlers were used as Southwater pulled the blinds down and started to shut up shop and pray for rain.

With Allsobrook, Tupper, Jewiss, Hammond and Joe Sissons going for only 16 runs in 11 overs, rain finally came and the umpire took the players off.

After a five-minute break, opening bowlers Staight and Pink returned - and didn’t disappoint. Staight claimed one victim and Pink two.

The last man was brilliantly caught by Taylor behind the sticks to give West Wittering the full 30 points. Pink finished with six for 19 and Staight four for 13 with Southwater all out for 56.