Trojans drop out of the SEPL

Trojans bowler Jamie Donaldson

Trojans bowler Jamie Donaldson

First published in Local Cricket by

Trojans are relegated from the Southern Electric Premier League after 15 years.

They are certain to finish in the bottom two of Division 3 after losing by five wickets to St Cross II at the Green Jackets Ground.

Promoted as Hampshiire League champions in 1999, Trojans will end their Premier League stay in bottom place – unless they beat Portsmouth & Southsea in their last Stoneham Lane outing on Saturday.

The match promises to be anything but a damp squib as second from bottom P&S have a mathematical chance of avoiding the drop.

After beating Alton II by four wickets, P&S effectively trail St Cross Symondians by 17 points – a situation that, with 22 points up for grabs, could turn around if they win at Trojans.

St Cross II have a less than appetising trip to Bashley (Rydal) II, who are chasing the Premier 3 title.

Dismissed for 179 at the RGJ, Trojans were in with a shout when a double strike by Jamie Donaldson (2-21) and another by Jack Longman had St Cross wobbling at 38-3.

But Martin Jones (22) and James Burridge, whose 43 not out saw the job through, steadied the ship.

Matt Haworth (20) made a useful contribution, but at 129-5 and still 51 needed, there was still work to be done.

Cue Kelvin Lockwood, who hit 37 in an unbroken half-century partnership with Burridge to take St Cross to victory.

Those Symondian celebrations were muted when news leaked through that Alton II had been dismissed for 145 and beaten by P & S – Alex Fletcher (33 not out) and Matt Benfield (41) sharing a key partnership after the Southsea side had dropped to 85-5.

But now it’s all down to the final game – provided the weather improves and the pitches dry out.

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