Moffat’s five-wicket haul puts Pont on top

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Ponteland (204-3) v Whickham (200-8) Northumberland & Tyneside Senior League, Division A2

PONTELAND consolidated their position in the top three after a close encounter against Whickham.

The home side batted first and after a relatively slow start, the brothers Ritzema soon blossomed into a strong partnership, with Whickham professional Parr played with relative ease and well run singles and twos soon were the order of the day.

The opening pair put on 81 before James Ritzema was caught at mid-off for 37, which meant Darwood entered the fray and he continued his good run of form by quickly upping the pace with Wayne Ritzema, scoring boundaries either side of the wicket.

When Darwood was run out for 53 the score was 181 for two, with five overs still remaining.

Wayne Ritzema was then bowled six runs later for a dogged 77, leaving the big hitters Seymour and Taylor to finish off the innings in style.

Seymour was 15 not out and Taylor 12 not out from just five balls as Ponteland finished their 50 overs on 204 for three.

With the wind behind him, Moffat soon dismissed one of the away side’s openers caught behind by Wright. Parr soon followed to the same bowler, bowled by a ball keeping low.

McGregor took the wicket of the other opener, with a diving catch at cover by Wayne Ritzema, to make the score 32 for three.

Regardless of their position, runs were still flowing for Whickham with Ainey compiling runs at one end and partners quietly scoring at the other.

Howard Wright was unlucky to have two dropped catches and a near miss via the fielder’s knee.

The return of Moffat soon heralded another wicket and with Wright soon dismissing Ainey (51) with an excellent leg-side stumping off Seymour, once again Pont were in control.

Another superb piece of keeping from Wright, a diving catch to his left, gave Moffat his five-wicket haul.

But Whickham were still in the hunt thanks to the dangerous Davidson (55 not out).

With 12 needed off the last over, Wayne Ritzema’s significant turn kept the batsmen at bay and with six required from the last ball, only a single was achieved to give Pont a four-run victory.