ROPLEY bounced back from last week’s bad defeat and beat United Services by six wicket to move back to fourth in Hampshire League County One.

Another week, another toss lost and Ropley were sent into the field at the old county ground in Portsmouth. Ed Stennett, supported by the accurate Jack Ireland, restricted Services to 30-2 after 13 overs. Shashi Jayasinghe kept the scoreboard ticking over with a solid 42, but lacked support and finally edged an ‘arm ball’ from spinner Seb Newens to first slip. Jon Parker and youngster Freddie Gadd provided some tailend entertainment and the Portsmouth side were all out for 139 in the 43rd over.

With 50 overs to get the runs, Ropley openers Rob Smith and Chris Burrows mimicked Services’ run-rate until Ali Bhaks had Smith caught behind off an inviting wide delivery.

Alex Spencer and Burrows added 51 to see Ropley to 67-1 after 20 overs. Portsmouth kept plugging away and removed Spencer and Ireland, but Ropley needed just 47 from 23 overs when Alexander Stogdon joined Burrows. Gadd bowled Burrows for 31, leaving skipper Stogdon to see his side home with 14.5 overs to spare.