Close encounter played in right spirit

Stobswood Welfare (156-8) v Ulgham (150-6) Northumberland Cricket League, Division One

ULGHAM returned to league action after the enforced break due to the weather with the short visit to Stobswood.

After winning the toss, the visitors’ skipper Alan Hynd decided to bat and saw his side get off to a steady start with Tait and Plummer adding 64 in 24 overs before the Stobswood pressure began to tell when the latter departed for 41.

The bowling of Ian Watson and Beverley was tight and Ulgham found runs hard to come by, losing Campbell for four, Haygarth for 12 and Tait for 25 to leave the away side on 92 for four from 41 overs.

A fine stand of 50 between Chase Evans and Gary Hall ended with an Evans run out and with Moore departing for a duck, Ulgham limped to 150 for six with Hall unbeaten on 18 and Stokoe one.

The Stobswood reply got off to a bad start with Campbell removing Patterson for one, but then the visitors suffered a blow when opening bowler Moore had to leave the field with a side injury after bowling six overs.

The next success for Ulgham was not until the 26th over when Evans removed Ian Watson for 26 with the score on 81.

At 102 for 2 with 15 overs to go the home side were cruising but they suddenly decided to press the panic button and lost a flurry of wickets.

At 117 for six with nine overs to go the away side were beginning to sense an unlikely victory. Indeed even at 144 for eight and with the last pair at the wicket, due to an unfortunate injury to Richard Watson, the game was still in the balance.

A cool head by Beverley and some dashing shots by Dan Watson saw Stobswood home with nine balls to spare.

Campbell (one for 19), Charlton (0 for 27), Moore (0 for 14), Stokoe (0 for 47), Evans (one for 10), Haygarth (3 for 25) and Hall (one for five) were the Ulgham bowlers. Richard Marshall top-scored for the home side with 59.

This was a cracking game of cricket enjoyed by both sides and the spectators watching and was a credit to both sets of players as the match was played in a great spirit.