Blagdon hold their nerve to win tight Ashington encounter

Ashington Rugby II (107/8) v Blagdon Park II (108/8) Northumberland Cricket League, Division Two

ON a scorching May day at Ashington Rugby Club, Blagdon Park and Ashington Rugby did battle in a mid-table clash, writes Stuart Dick.

It was a battle of two bowling attacks, as batsman struggled to get accustomed to the variable bounce in the wicket, with Pirasannan Inpathurai (3-10) and David Simpson (3-43) taking three wickets apiece for the visitors, before David Wanless Snr (3-32) and David Wanless Jnr (3-25) produced a similar performance.

Despite the best efforts of the Wanless pair, it was Blagdon who took the victory with just 11 balls to spare.

After a solid opening, the home side were rocked by Inpathurai’s devastating spell. He bowled Pattinson with an in-swinging yorker. Next over, Inpathurai produced another late swinging yorker to trap Liam Lavery LBW for a duck.

He got his third wicket with the first ball of his fifth over, getting Watson to mistime one to mid-wicket where Andrew Bain took an easy catch.

Leg spinner David Simpson did get attacked a few times, but he had the last laugh by dismissing Wanless Jnr, Hogg and Hudson.

Adam Clarke took the other wicket for the visitors, bowling Kevin Hetherington for a duck, before Drainer ran out Jay Little off the bowling of Simpson as Ashington managing to scrape to a score of 107-8.

In reply, Clarke (nine) was dismissed when he chipped a delivery into the air, with Michael Watson taking the catch. Sam Eyres and John Whittaker looked comfortable and moved the score on, before Eyres was stumped by Hetherington off the bowling of Pringle for 11. Blagdon sent Drainer to the wicket and he quickly reached double figures, although he was out going for one big shot too many.

Wickets began to tumble, however, after Whittaker was removed by a Hetherington stumping for 26 off Wanless Snr and the score was reduced to 81-7.

Inpathurai and Simpson pushed the singles and slowly reduced the deficit, although Ashington made another breakthrough when Inpathurai was trapped LBW by Wanless Jnr for 11, leaving the score on 97-8.

Simpson was joined at the wicket by Dick with seven overs remaining and the pair defended well and took the bad ball chances available to reach the victory target. Simpson ended up on nine not out, with Dick finishing on five not out.

It was a fantastic game of cricket for the neutral and a big 20 points for Blagdon Park II. They are now fourth in Division Two.