WHITBY Cricket Club 1sts suffered a shock defeat as the they were beaten by relegation candidates Marske in a low-scoring game at the Turnbull.
Marske came into the fixture full of confidence, coming off the back of a win against promotion hopefuls Bishop Auckland in their last outing.
Whitby won the toss and had no hesitation in asking the visitors to bat first on what looked to be a slow pitch.
Marske got off to a decent start with openers Wiltshire and Mains helping themselves to some early boundaries off the bowling of Tom Steyert and James Hall. It was only when Steyert pegged Mains’ off-stump back that Whitby began to gain some control.
The next wicket fell soon after when Steven Allen had Chris Lince caught at mid-on for just four.
And Wiltshire didn’t last too much longer either as he was castled by a fantastic delivery from Steyert.
The next partnership was a frustrating one for the home side, as Crooks and Powell dug in and proved very hard to dislodge.
The stand was eventually ended when Ricky hall dismissed Powell for a determined innings of 21.
The next partnership proved to be just as frustrating as Jonathan Webb partnered Crooks as the pair went about adding some momentum to the Marske innings. Both men ran well between the wickets along with chipping in with the odd boundary.
Just as it was looking as though the visitors were going to be able to reach a score of in roughly 200 or even more, James Hall was introduced into the attack and didn’t fail to deliver was he bowled a potentially game-changing over.
It began when Webb chipped a simple catch to James Fawcett at long-on and the over got even better when Crooks was bowled for a solid 42 the very next over.
And then a couple of balls later, Carl Drinkel was also bowled, for just one.
Hall picked up three wickets in the space of one over and set the visitors back significantly.
Ricky Hall then picked up two more wickets to wrap the innings up as Marske crawled along to 162 all out in 48.4 overs.
Whitby began their innings confident that if they played as they knew they could then they would be able to reach the required total.
But they got off to the worst possible start when the in-form Paul Harrison was bowled for 0 and then James Fawcett fell lbw not long afterwards. And when Will Donald was bowled for just five soon after, Whitby were 20-3 and needed a partnership to help them out of trouble.
The task was left to Kai Morris and Ron Lyth to try to resurrect the innings.
The pair worked hard and were just beginning to look like they were going to find their feet when Morris was bowled for a gritty 13 and then Lyth got one that kept low on 17, leaving Whitby were back on the back foot.
Paul Buck and James Hall didn’t last long either, leaving Whitby with no way back.
Tom Steyert was the only man to provide any brief resistance as he made a solid 28 in vain.
Ricky Hall hit a long-hop down the throat of a fieldsman soon after, leaving just numbers 10 and 11 to partner Steyert.
Steven Allen and Mike Fawcett put in small contributions of 15 and 14 not out respectively, but it was too little too late as far as the home side was concerned.
When Steyert was bowled by spinner Alexander Birbeck the game was all over and Whitby were bowled out for a miserable 126 in just over 43 overs.
Whitby will need to improve their performances massively if they are to fair any better in their final two fixtures against Darlington and Redcar, who are still in the mix for promotion.