Whitby outplay rivals, but last wicket stays

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Whitby 1st team came away from a tricky match at Northallerton on Saturday with a winning draw, having outplayed the home side comprehensively but without clinching a victory.

The last two Northallerton batsmen were able to resist for eight overs before a hard-fought contest came to a close, leaving Whitby frustrated.

Top scorer for Whitby was captain, Paul Buck, who showed an impressive range of shots in his 65 not out.

Wickets were shared out with three victims each for the ‘spin twins’, Will Donald and James Hall, and Ryan Braithwaite weighing in with two wickets late on.

The game started promisingly for Whitby as Arran Leeman showed that he is adapting well to opening the batting at this level with a determined 37.

However, the middle order could not do likewise for Whitby and they were in a precarious position again at 80/6 when Buck and youngster Finlay Morris came together.

Their partnership of 65 was the backbone of the Whitby innings and showed what a promising stroke-maker Morris is. When he fell for 18 the stuffing had been knocked out of the Northallerton bowlers and Whitby were able to post a score of 176/8 with Buck hitting six fours and two sixes.

It was clear from the start that Whitby’s seam bowling options were rather limited on this occasion as regular players were missing. However, James Hall and Matt Towey ensured that the home side did not make a good start.

At 23/3, Northallerton rallied thanks to a bright innings of 59 from Joe Clarkson.

Wickets continued to tumble fairly regularly and at 130/9 Northallerton had little to play for, other than a draw. Frustratingly for Whitby the last two batsmen held out despite the pressure applied by attacking bowling and close fielders.

These points leave the Whitby side still in third place in the North Yorkshire and South Durham League’s first division, several points clear of their nearest rivals.