Park go clear after picking up points

Blagdon Park I (324-5) v Tillside (164 all out) Northumberland Cricket League, Premier Division

BLAGDON Park picked up all 30 points as they went three points clear at the top of the league with a comprehensive victory, writes Russell Hughes.

Winning the toss and electing to bat, the home side’s opening pair Hughes and Gibson, reunited after the latter returned from Sheffield University, put on 72 for the first wicket.

The first wicket came as Gibson (35) went to pull a poor ball from Hindmarsh that climbed over his head and drew a top edge which was snaffled by keeper Sim.

Then new boy Sanders showed the class that Blagdon thought they were getting when they prised him from Morpeth.

He put together a patient partnership of 93 with Hughes (86), who after playing good cricket and hitting two sixes in one over become the second victim of below average bowling, miscuing another rank half tracker straight up in the air to be claimed by Sim.

Shaun Collins came in and showed he has the guns to go big, scoring two fours and three sixes in his innings of 45 from 47 balls, before being caught on the cow corner boundary.

Matthew Senior, Martin Tallantyre and Mark Foster all helped the Blagdon cause, contributing 39 runs from just 23 balls between them. However, it was Sanders who stole the show, cracking two sixes and one four from the last over to finish with an brilliant 96 not out as Blagdon Park finished on 324 for five.

Now it was the turn of the Blagdon bowlers to show their Tillside compatriots how to do it.

Opening up, Matthew Senior took the first wicket with a ball that climbed on Bickerton and flicked his glove and was caught behind by stand-in wicketkeeper Hughes.

Williamson soon joined the party, tempting young number three Sim with a wider one that was edged to Hughes.

At 21-2 Tillside needed some stability, which captain Turnball and Beasley provided when putting on 63 for the third wicket, before Turnball fell to the oldest leg spinner’s trick in the book.

Alistair Clark bowled a full toss, Turnball smashed it long, deep and to the hands of deep square leg.

Soon after that, McGregor lobbed a ball from Clark straight into the hands of Tallantyre at mid-wicket.

Cameron Beasley then fell for 39 as he misread a Clark leg spinner and lofted the ball to Johnson at extra cover.

Only Gareth Hill proved any other resistance, smoking three fours and one six in his innings of 34. He was caught behind off the bowling of Clark for 34.

Clark mopped up the tail with glee and finished with figures of six for 35 as Tillside were all out for 164, 160 runs behind Blagdon.