Title hopes still alive

Blagdon Park (239 all out) v Berwick (237-6) Northumberland Cricket League, Premier Division

BLAGDON Park narrowly came out on top in this close encounter to keep their title dreams alive.

The home side won the toss and decided to bat, but they suffered an early setback when David Gibson was bowled for a duck.

Russell Hughes (36) and Greg Senior (14) got them up and running and Shaun Collins scored at a rate of one a ball, including two sixes, and quickly reached his half-century.

When he was out for 65, Blagdon looked in danger of posting a score below 175 as the middle order were dismissed cheaply, but the tail-enders came to the rescue.

Alistair Clark made 47 useful runs and he had good support from Graeme Gaff (10) and Henry Blake (10 not out) as the hosts were all out for 239.

Berwick lost an early wicket when Emery (four) was trapped LBW by Clark.

But they were soon in the ascendancy once Middlemist and Wales (57) played themselves in and they took the score past 100. Wales was dismissed when he misjudged a Clark delivery and was stumped by wicketkeeper Nigel Clough.

Clark struck again to remove Patterson and Simmons was out LBW thanks to an excellent ball by Gibson.

Middlemist reached his century, which included regular hits to the boundary, but the game’s defining moment came when he was stumped by Clough off the bowling of Gibson.

The new batsmen couldn’t score at the required rate and Blagdon won the match by two runs. They are second in the table with a big gap over third-placed Warkworth.