WHITBY Cricket Club 1sts could only manage a draw in their match against Darlington RA 1sts on Saturday at the Turnbull Ground after a brilliant bowling and fielding display following some big hitting from the second team skipper Andrew Wood.
After losing the toss, Whitby were asked to bat first and got off to a particularly poor start, losing James Hall and Kai Morris in the early stages.
This brought captain Paul Buck to the crease to join James Fawcett as the pair set about rebuilding the Whitby innings.
Buck was looking in particularly good form as smashed four fours and two sixes in his fluent knock.
But with the score on 57 he smashed a long-hop straight to the deep mid wicket fieldsman and departed for 39.
Wicket-keeper Ron Lyth was the next man in, but he failed to get going and was bowled soon after.
This meant that Mark Harrison, making his first appearance since 2010, joined Fawcett, who was still standing firm, in the middle.
After surviving a huge appeal for caught behind, Harrison began to grow in confidence and looked more and more settled at the crease as his innings progressed. But when Fawcett eventually fell lbw for a gritty 20, Whitby were in a spot of bother at 76-5.
This meant Wood joined Harrison with the hosts firmly on the back foot. But when Harrison played a glorious cover drive for four and Wood deposited spinner Marshall on to Upgang Lane for six, Whitby began to gain some much-needed momentum.
They continued to push the score along at good pace. This was largely down to some good running between the wickets and some big hitting from Wood in particular, who hit two more sixes.
The pair had put on 71 for the sixth wicket when Wood was well caught at cover off the penultimate ball of the innings for a fine 44 including three sixes and two fours.
Chris Lyth was then able to scramble two off the final delivery to take the score on to 149 for 6 from Whitby’s 50 overs, with Harrison finishing with a very cultured 27 not out.
Whitby came out after the tea break determined to take early wickets and push for a victory.
Unfortunately for the hosts, RA’s young opening batsmen Marshall had others ideas, as he smashed 3 fours and 2 sixes of his own during the opening exchanges.
But at 43 for no wicket after the first 10 overs, veteran Chris Lyth had Marshall lbw for a quickfire 29.
Soon after, James Hall had Steven Bell brilliantly caught at mid-wicket by Harrison leaving the visitors two wickets down for 50.
And just two runs later, the visitors’ captain was caught by Andrew Wood off the bowling off Lyth.
The batting side’s position was made significantly worse when Lyth then clean bowled youngster Callum Buckley with the next ball to leave the score on 52-4.
Whitby were rampant and began to apply intense pressure with some tight bowling and quality fielding.
Runs were beginning to dry up and when Lyth picked his fourth wicket and Hall his second, the visitors were 61-6, seemingly with no way back.
But a determined seventh wicket stand between Stephen Thompson and Ramanjit Sidhu halted Whitby’s charge.
Ricky Hall then broke the partnership after the two had put on 44 with his off-spin, but another frustrating stand of 21 between Thompson and Jacob Chew carried the score onto 126 before Chew attempted to smash James Hall towards mid-wicket and was comprehensively bowled.
With the home side running out of overs to try for a win, but with the visitors still in with a chance of nicking a win themselves, a tight finish seemed on the cards. Unfortunately for Whitby, Gareth Percival and Thompson batted out the remaining overs and secured a draw.
The visitors finished with 135-8 from their 50 overs.
Whitby should be proud of their efforts, particularly in the field and with the ball and should pay great thanks to some excellent hitting from Andrew Wood – which enabled them to reach a competitive total in the first place.
The 1sts’ next outing is on Sunday (29 July) away at Blackhall whilst the 2nds entertain Darlington RA 2nds at the Turnbull on Saturday (28th July).