LITTLEHAMPTON Cricket Club’s new skipper James Askew smashed 150 not out as his side secured a winning draw against East Preston on Saturday.
Askew, who joined from Clymping over the winter, got off to the best possible start with the bat as he made his runs from just 157 balls.
His innings included ten fours and eight sixes as Littlehampton posted 233-1 from 49 overs.
The Littlehampton captain revealed he had mixed emotions at the end of the game and said: “Obviously, from a personal point of view, it was a great day.
“I had not played much over the winter and, fortunately for me, everything came out of the middle which was great.
“We felt confident at halfway that we had enough runs on the board to get the victory but, in the end, we couldn’t quite get over the line.
“Jack Sunderland (117 not out) batted superbly for them and denied us.
“We were trying to get him off strike but he is a talented player and knew what was required in that situation.
“All-in-all, it was a decent start for us, we have got points on the board after the first game and we’ll look to carry that forward into the coming matches.”
Littlehampton were put into bat and lost an early wicket as Nathan Perry was dismissed for four. However, Littlehampton responded well with Askew (150 not out) and Thomas Lee (66 not out) putting on 222 for the second wicket.
On what proved to be a difficult day in the field for EP, Joe Carter took the only wicket to fall.
In response, East Preston struggled in the early part of their innings.
The dismissals of Gary Weedon (24), Tim Miles (six), Tom Chamberlain (five) and Tom Reeves (one) left EP 58-4.
However, with the home side looking destined for defeat, Sunderland came to their rescue. He hit a magnificent 117 not out from just 94 balls, which included 14 fours and eight sixes.
Mark O’Keefe added 25 as EP finished on 191-7 from their 45 overs.
Chris Heberlein led the way for Littlehampton as he took 3-51 from 13 overs.
EP captain Gary Weedon was pleased with his side’s batting display and said: “It was an exceptional knock from Jack and the middle order batted really well to keep the game competitive.
“Throughout the game, we showed glimpses of excellent play and that is something we want to continue.
“I think a draw was fair.”