Hythe dragged themselves out of the Division One relegation zone with a nail-biting 22 run win over Whitstable at The Belmont on Saturday. A five-wicket haul from Andy Maurice helped the visitors notch their first batting-first, 20-point victory of the campaign, lifting them up to eighth in the table; if only on number of games won.

Hythe were put into bat by the home side and on a scorching hot July afternoon managed to post 269, utilising The Belmont’s small dimensions and flat wicket. There were contributions all of the way down the order but Australian Lachlan Blunden led the way with a 93 ball, 51, which included seven boundaries.

In reply, Whitstable seemed to be always in with a sniff. James Loader made a competent 57 but their innings lacked any substantial score through which they could chase down 270. Maurice returned figures of 5-56 before pulling up with an injury, his first 5 wicket haul for the side he joined over the winter. He removed Loader at a crucial time, as Jago Pearson took an excellent diving catch in the covers, but with one over to go, the home side were still 9 wickets down and seemingly intent on depriving Hythe of the outright win. With just four balls remaining, young seamer Jamie Hemphery got rid of Duncan Hardy to another catch from Pearson in the covers, leaving Joshua Gould stranded on 26 and triggering emphatic celebrations as Hythe recorded their second win in as many weeks.

They are back at The Grove this coming weekend facing title favourites Blackheath. They will no doubt be desperate to make ammends for their disappointing defeat to the same opposition on Matchday 2.


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Hythe ran out convincing winners in the hotly contested local derby against Sibton Park at The Grove on Saturday, as spinners Lochan Blunden and Jago Pearson took seven wickets between them to roll out the visitors for 180.

Despite 66 from the evergreen Andy Allon, the Park limped to an under par score on a flat wicket, as Blunden (4-46) and Pearson (3-23) ripped through their middle order. It was an excellent display of spin bowling from both the Australian Blunden and the seventeen year old Pearson, which was crucial in setting up Hythe’s only second win of year.

Blunden capped off his fine bowling display with two run outs, gifted to him by some suicidal running on both occasions by top-scorer Allon, and then with a fine 66, which along with an unbeaten 57 from skipper Leon Morgan, saw his side home.

Hythe remain in the Division One relegation zone, but will be mindful of the similar position they were in last year, before a run of five consecutive wins catapulted them up to second. They will travel to Whitstable’s Belmont Ground this weekend looking to get on a roll.

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Beachboys End Drought

Hythe returned from Harvel on Saturday with 16 points and their first win of the season.

A fine bowling display saw seven wickets fall to the off spin of Jago Pearson and Aussie Lachlan Blunden, the latter picking up his maiden 5-wicket haul.

Having bowled out the home side for an under par 155 on a damp pitch, Tim Pichowski came to the party with an excellent 59, smashing the Harvel attack all around the park with some clean hitting. Daniel Patching contributed with a gritty 33 and wicketkeeper Sam Butler finished the job off with a six that cleared the pavilion to win the game.

Hythe remain in the bottom two, but their first win in six games will be of massive relief to the team that only just missed out on promotion in 2009. They are back at The Grove this weekend, facing Ashford, hoping to get on a winning streak.

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Canterbury Steered to Victory at The Grove

Following a disappointing loss to Beckenham two weeks ago and then  a wash out against local rivals Folkestone, Hythe continued with their winless run as they were beaten by 6 wickets at the hands of Canterbury.

Canterbury’s Paul Steer was the main man, with an unbeaten ton to guide his side to victory despite a very competitive total posted by the Beachboys.

Hythe 241-5

Canterbury 242-4

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Outclassed by the Pros

Hythe suffered their second successive defeat at the start of the 2010 campaign, losing by 8 wickets away at title favourites Blackheath.

It was evident from when the fixtures were announced that the coastal side would be in for a tough start and thus it has proven to be. With the likes of Dan Furnival, Leon Morgan, John Smith and Jamie Hemphery all absent the trip up to South London was always going to be difficult, especially when you take into account the opposition’s rumoured wage bill.

James Watson (56) led Hythe to 162-9 off their 50 overs, following on from a quick start by opener Chris Maurice (23). On a feather-bed of a deck it was never going to be enough however, but at the very least they weren’t blown away by the renowned potent opening attack that is Ruel Braithwaite and Jahid Ahmed, the latter being a member of the ECB Development Squad.

In reply, another Development squad member, Zobie Sharif (40) got them off to a good start before being bowled by spinner Jago Pearson. Despite his wicket and the loss of Jack Ford, who was removed with a sharp catch at slip by Watson off the bowling of Dan Large, the home side were in little trouble. With shots all around the wicket, Sean Parry smashed 90 and so take the 16 points, while Hythe returned just 2.

They return to The Grove this weekend with a tough encounter against Beckenham and with still many notable absentees, will surely go in as big underdogs.

A full match scorecard can be found at:

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Whitstable come back from the brink to upset the odds at The Grove

Whitstable 169-9   Hythe 146

Hythe had a disappointing start to their 2010 Division One campaign against Whitstable on Saturday, as they fell to a 23 run defeat at The Grove.

The home side started well, reducing the visitors to 130-9 having won the toss and put them in in damp, overcast conditions. Dan Patching was the pick of the bowlers, finishing with figures of 4-35 off his 15 overs which included 6 maidens. Youngster Jamie Hemphery provided ample support, returning with remarkable figures of 3-9.

However, the tide soon turned, as Whitstable tail-enders Josh Gould and Duncan Hardy put on an undefeated 39 for the 10th wicket.  They took this momentum into the second innings, with their seamers ripping out the Hythe top 5 for just 39 runs. James Watson (22) and Dan Patching (41) provided some resistance, but when the latter fell with the score on 105, the game was up. Ben Trott, James Mills and James Loader each picked up 3 wickets.

Hythe will be looking to put this opening loss behind them when they take a tough trip to title favourites Blackheath this coming weekend, who have ECB Development Squad members Jahid Ahmed and Zoheb Sharif amongst their ranks.

A complete match scorecard can be found here:

For more information on the ECB Development Squad (Unicorns), please visit:,309750,EN.html

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Morgan with Captain’s Innings

Hythe stepped up their preparation for the new season yesterday with a hard fought win against Canterbury.

Dan Patching bowling in last year's encounter with Folkestone

The home side chose to bat first on a flat Polo Farm track and reached 197-5 off their allotted 45 overs, with Paul Steer finishing unbeaten on 84. An excellent opening spell from Dan Patching was followed up by some economical off-spin bowling from Jago Pearson who finished with figures of 1-31 off his nine overs.

In reply, skipper Leon Morgan steadied the ship following the early loss of openers Maurice and Blunden. With shots all around the wicket, he made 78 in quick time and very nearly put the game beyond Canterbury, before being dismissed by his opposite number Tim Wren, who took an excellent return catch of his own bowling.

Despite the loss of mainstay Morgan, support from Patching and a cameo down the order from seamer and new signing from Ashford, Andy Maurice, was enough to see Hythe to their first win of 2010.

They complete their preparations back at The Grove this coming Saturday, when they take on local rivals Folkestone.

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