The 1st team qualified for the quarter finals of the NEPL Banks Salver with two excellent victories over the Bank Holiday weekend to finish top of the group with 6 wins out of 7.
Thanks to our roving reporter, junior supremo, 3rd team manager Barry Pearson for these match reports.
On Saturday, we were hosts to local rivals South North, and after being put into bat in tricky conditions, we scored an above par 182 for 7 in 40 overs. Once again, consistent contributions right down the order was the key, notably 49 from James Schofield, 46 from Kyle Coetzer and 45 from Finn McCreath.
In reply, excellent bowling put the visitors under pressure at 31 for 3 before Michael Richardson and skipper Adam Cragg brought South North back into the game. Max Williamson took the crucial wicket of Cragg, and after that we kept chipping away to end up winning the game by 16 runs. Kyle picked up 3 more wickets, Rory Hanley 2, with 1 each for Callum, Max, Luke and Mohsin.
On Bank Holiday Monday, it was really nice to make the trip back to old Northumberland rivals Ashington in our final group game. In front of a big crowd, the Hill won the toss and batted first. The game was in the balance at 74 for 5 before a partnership of 48 between Phil Bell and skipper Pete Halliday, and then 44 between Phil and Mohsin Mukhtar set up a competitive total of 167 for 8 after 40 overs. Phil Bell's innings of 54 not out was crucial against a spirited bowling and fielding effort from the home side.
Two early wickets from 'all rounder' Kyle Coetzer put the hosts on the back foot, and excellent bowling together with energetic fielding kept Ashington behind the run rate before they finally finished 43 runs short. Moshin finished with excellent figures of 4 for 13 with his left arm spin, Max chipped in with 2 including the crucial scalp of Ben Harmison.
The Hill now have a home tie in the quarter finals at home to Eppleton this coming Saturday.
The 1st XI scorecards are available here :