The second XI started their season against newly promoted Hetton Lyons, who we played last season in the Banks bowl final so we knew it would be a tough test in the opening match of the season.
The format was the same as last sslightly tweaked from last season in that it was played in coloured clothing with a yellow ball, with a straight 50/50 win lose format for the opening match.
On a bright and warm April day we won the toss and elected to bat on a nice looking opening day pitch. The normal opening partnership of Moore and Hynd started off and It was soon clear that the pitch was quite tough to play any attacking shots on with most drives going aerial. After a steady start Hynd was the first out for 19, well caught at first slip trying to guide the ball to third man, leaving the Hill 42/1. Heather (3) and Mustard (4) followed quickly after leaving us 62/3. Aatif joined Moore and they steadied the ship and took us past 100. The usually fluent Moore was finding it tough to time the ball but past 50, before being bowled for 51 from 79. Fletcher joined Aatif and they took us past 150, before Fletcher was out for 26. Leaving us well set for a push towards 200, at 158/5 at 40 overs. However Hetton bowled very well in the last 10 and continued to take wickets, Aatif was soon run out for 33 and the rest of the lads couldn’t get going and no-one between 7 & 11 could manage double figures. We were all out for 180 in 46.5 overs, we came off thinking that we were competitive but slightly under par and disappointed that we didn’t use up all the overs. Credit must go to Hetton who bowled very well, with Harrison Lowther picking up 3/30 and their two spinners slowing up the run rate in the middle overs. They must have thought that if they had caught their catches they could have kept us under 150. We however did think that with our strong bowling attack we could put some pressure on their batters.
Kilpatrick and Moody opened the bowling and both bowled superbly hitting the seam and making life difficult for the usually aggressive opening batters. Kilpatrick removed 2, 3 and 4 in quick succession leaving Hetton 22/3, despite a couple of big sixes from the dangerous Lowther. Moody then removed 4, 5 and 6 with one from a fantastic catch behind down the leg side by Mustard, leaving Hetton in big trouble at 38/6, with opener Lowther watching on 28*. Safi replaced Kilpatrick and picked up a wicket straight away and then when Jones removed Lowther in his first over Hetton were 39/8. Some late resistance took Hetton to 60 all out and the second team ran out eventual 120 run winners. The wickets were well spread out Moody (3/20), Kilpatrick (3/19), Safi (3/18) and Jones (1/3) all bowling very well.
The scorecard is available here https://benwellhill.play-cricket.com/website/results/5024705
Next week we play Tynemouth who also won their opening match.