For the second successive week Sunbury’s game went to the wire before Sunbury got over the line to record their first league win of the Season against local rivals East Molesey with the hosts just 11 runs short.
Batting first John Maunders and Elliott Shaw batting steadily and without too much difficulty managed an opening stand of 93 before Shaw went for 33. Maunders who was batting supremely and Sam Burgess (25) took the score to 161, before Burgess fell victim to an lbw decision. Nathaniel Gregory came in to join his skipper and from the start of his innings showed a positive intent to up the run rate and although Maunders (93) fell short of what would have been a well deserved century and then Rhythm Bedi was needlessly run-out Gregory continued to pile on the pressure. Alex Hughes took a leaf out of Gregory’s book as the pair added 51 in no time, Gregory finally being dismissed for a well struck 60 with 7–fours and 2-sixes from just 43 balls and it was left to Hughes (36*) to see Sunbury to a respectable 276-4.
If Sunbury started their innings respecting their hosts opening bowlers the opposite could be said at the start of East Molesey’s, as Dominic Reed struck 3 boundaries in Kevin Smith’s first over but Sunbury’s strike bowler took his revenge and then captured a second wicket as East Molesey were reduced to 30-2. Angelo Perera the Sri Lankan international came to the wicket and immediately showed his class as he made batting look easy. The introduction of Gregory (2-26 from 9 overs) and Vishal Manro (1-26 from 7 overs) into the attack stemmed the flow of runs and although Perera was never in difficulty East Molesey slipped to 89-4. Sam Burge then joined Perera and East Molesey looked threatening again as the pair began to score runs with ease before Perera was beautifully bowled by Manro for 61 and at 144-5 it looked anybody’s game, but when skipper Burge, with a well struck 89, was eventually out with the score on 254-7 it looked all up for Sunbury. The re-introduction of Smith, who had not been at his best in his earlier spells despite his 2 early wickets, clearly thought differently as he captured the last 3 wickets with only eleven runs added to the total as East Molesey were dismissed in the final over for 265 to give Sunbury a hard fought first league win, with Smith ending on 5-66 from 9.3 overs, but it was Man of the Match, Nathaniel Gregory who took the plaudits with his 60, 2-26 and 2 catches off Smith’s final burst.
This Saturday Sunbury are at home to league pace-setters and newly promoted Cranleigh starting at 12.00 hoping to continue their winning way and on Sunday visit Finchampstead in the second round of the National KO Cup, starting at 1.00.