Masterful Maunders leads by example

1st XI v Beddington

Winning the toss and deciding to field was the first stroke of genius from skipper John Maunders, as he lead from the front to ensure Sunbury managed another victory, to set up a winner-take-all against Reigate Priory in the final match of the season this coming Saturday.

Kevin Smith and Ishy Sohi both struck early to reduce Beddington to 13-2 in the seventh over and when Smith took his second wicket in the eleventh with the score on 37 all was looking good for Sunbury. A stand of 60 in 20 overs steadied the Beddington innings before off-spinner Alex Hughes and Rhythm Bedi, standing in for the absent frontline bowlers Adam Stanier and Amar Virdi, reduced the home side to 104-6. Vishal Manro stepped up to capture 3 more quick wickets and when Nath Gregory pitched in with the last wicket Beddington’s innings ended on a modest 146. Manro was yet again Sunbury’s most effective bowler, taking 3-16 in his 10 overs, with quicky Smith finishing with 2-18 and Hughes with 2-30.

In recent weeks a modest total was something Sunbury have regularly struggled with and losing the early wicket of Sean Ventham didn’t help their cause. Maunders was joined by Adam London and the two stalwarts set about a more than useful Beddington attack but when London(19) was adjudged lbw and then Sam Burgess and Rhythm Bedi fell cheaply to give Rogerson three quick wickets, Sunbury were reduced to 96-4. Olly Roland-Jones, the batting hero from the previous week joined Maunders, who was now looking supreme as he went to his half century and the pair took the score to 142 before Roland-Jones(23) became another lbw victim, this time to Beddingtan’s pacer Ryan Cummins. But it was all up for the hosts as Gregory got the winning runs to see Sunbury home. Maunders carried his bat, ending on 68 not out in a watchful innings of 103 balls that included 11 fours.

The win and a similar result for Reigate Priory means that Sunbury lead the table by just 15 points and with 20 on offer to the winners of Saturday’s clash between the two sides at Kenton Court, it is really all to play for. The 50 over a-side match starts at the earlier time of 11.30 and will surely produce the closest finish to the Surrey Championship for many a year played out by the two most consistent sides.

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