Rawlins shows more all-round prowess
Delray Rawlins produced an aggressive innings and claimed three wickets as he and Sussex began their defence of the Second XI Twenty20 title with a win and a loss in back-to-back meetings against Unicorns at Eastbourne on Wednesday.
Sussex cruised to a comfortable eight-wicket victory in the first match with Rawlins, the slow left-arm spinner, claiming two for ten with the new ball as the Unicorns were skittled for 78 in 18.1 overs.
Luke Wells, the leg spinner, was the pick of the Sussex bowling with three for 11 while only two Unicorns batsmen reached double figures.
Wells also led the chase with 35 from 27 balls to cap a fine all-round display as Sussex reached their target in 10.2 overs.
Wells’s opening partner, Phil Salt, added 17 off 13 and Laurie Evans, batting at No 3, an unbeaten 25 from 19 balls. Rawlins did not bat.
BA Waring and Uzair Amjad claimed the only Sussex wickets to fall.
However, Sussex were denied the sweep after the Unicorns came storming back to win the second contest by three wickets in an exciting match that went down to the wire.
Sussex were restricted to 99 for eight after electing to bat with Rawlins, batting at No 5, scoring a team high 35 from 31 deliveries that included two sixes and as many fours to lead a fightback after the champions slipped to 26 for five in the sixth over.
George Garton, who gathered 26 from 39 balls, and Wells, who added 11, were the only other Sussex batsmen in double figures.
The Unicorns were reduced to 57 for five in the 12th over in their reply but recovered with middle-order Matthie McKiernan, who scored 23, and Peter Burgoyne, with 21, producing a 37-run partnership that carried their team to the brink of victory, which was eventually achieved off the final ball of the match.
William Beer, the leg spinner, was the pick of the Sussex bowlers with 15 while Rawlins and Will Sheffield took a wicket each.
Sussex were crowned Second XI Twenty20 champions after beating Hampshire by 24 runs in last year’s final with Rawlins stroking 40 and taking two wickets.
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