KENT swing bowler Martin Saggers wasted no time in launching his 2009 benefit season by holding a fund-raising New Year’s Day cricket game in front of almost 200 chilly supporters at Hartley Cricket Club.
Batting first after losing the toss, Hartley amassed 130-5 in their 15 overs thanks in the main to an unbroken opening stand between former Kent batsman James Hockley (38) and Nick Lee with an unbeaten 34.
Thankfully for Saggers and Co both openers retired with the home score on 78, after which the visitors hit back through the leg-spin of Mark Pennell, who took 2-9 to keep the run-rate down to 8.6 an over.
In reply the Saggers XI lost five quick wickets including Joe Denly (19) and Saggers himself for eight, but they moved to within 12 of their target courtesy of an excellent, unbeaten 59 by Craig Buchan to close on 119-8.
Report by Mark Pennell