Howe century keeps Whitby 1sts on top

Whitby 1sts take on Richmondshire 1nds on Saturday'picture: Alan Wastell
Whitby 1sts take on Richmondshire 1nds on Saturday'picture: Alan Wastell

Whitby 1st XI maintained their successful start to the season by gaining maximum points in their home match against Richmondshire on Saturday.

Lots of runs were scored as the home side posted a total of 260-7 and Richmondshire came to within 60 runs of this when their last wicket fell.

Top scorer for Whitby was Theo Clarke with an excellent 98. Richard Howe once again showed what a fine all-round cricketer he is with 60 runs and four wickets to celebrate his birthday.

Whitby lost opener Paul Harrison early though Will Donald scored a bright 21 before he fell lbw.

For a time, runs were hard to come by against fairly tight bowling and with half the overs gone, Whitby were languishing on 78-3.

It was then that a sparkling partnership of 130 was realised by Howe and Clarke.

The Australian, Richard Howe, lost no opportunity to hit the ball, pulling anything short and driving the over-pitched ball with force.

By so doing, he scored 10 boundaries and re-energised the innings.

Whitby schoolboy Theo Clarke was carried along by this and grew in confidence, playing equally good shots all round the wicket and scoring 15 fours and two sixes.

His determination shone through as he approached a century, only to be cruelly denied two runs short by a good piece of bowling.

Finally, the innings came to a close on 260-7, a formidable score for any visiting team to chase.

Richmond’s innings began badly for them as Howe removed two of the top three batsmen, Andrew Menzies taking the other wicket.

Resistance from the visitors took the form of a solid partnership between Oliver Kelly (48 ) and Tom Dell (26 ) but a couple of wickets from Will Donald helped Whitby to get on top.

The home side pressed for victory as overs ran out and finally, with two overs to spare, a crazy run-out brought a well-deserved 25 points for the Whitby men.

Man of the match was Richard Howe.

Monday fixture

Whitby Cricket Club continued their successful start to the season with another fine performance on Monday, bringing them 17 points and maintaining their position at the top of division one of the North Yorkshire and South Durham League.

The Australian amateur, Richard Howe, re-emphasised his class by scoring his debut century for the club and James Hall took four wickets with his off-spinners as Whitby fell just short of victory on their trip to Marton CC.

Batting first, the Whitby men called upon new openers and were not disappointed as Matt Towey batted confidently and impressively to score 48 with good shots all round the wicket.

His dismissal, however, brought together Howe and local lad, Kai Morris, a partnership which was to realise 162 runs in total and form the backbone of the innings.

Howe quickly caught up with his batting partner by attacking forcefully to the point where Marton at one stage had seven fielders on the boundary.

Nevertheless, he struck 13 boundaries in a superb 101 not out. Kai Morris also took charge in a controlled display of talent which brought him 76 runs and showed great promise.

Dominance with the bat enabled Whitby to post a score of 265-4, a daunting total for Marton to pursue.

The home side’s young players did them proud, however, showing the stout resistance required in this situation and wickets were hard to come by for the Whitby bowling attack.

James Hall dismissed four Marton batsmen, all clean bowled, as his spin defeated their defences, putting Whitby in with a chance of victory.

However, the visitors were unable to take the final two wickets and force a win as Marton ended on 157 8.

Man of the match was once again Richard Howe for his unbeaten century.

Whitby Cricket Club is sponsored by Marston’s Penny Hedge pub.