BLAGDON Park secured a vital win away to Whitley Bay with just two balls to spare as they look to defend their B1 title.
Opening bowlers Pirisannan Inpathurai and Andy Pryor opened the bowling for the away side, facing Jonny Hymers and Ben Harris.
The openers looked to get off to a fast start, taking the attack to Pryor and edging Inpathurai for multiple boundaries.
Pryor was forced off with injury after just three overs, with young paceman Henry Blake taking the ball.
Blake looked sharp in his opening spell, whilst Inpathurai had Hymers in all kinds of trouble.
Inpathurai got his deserved wicket near the end of his spell as he bowled Harris for 22. Inpathurai bowled his ten overs straight, going for just 1-24.
At the other end, Blake was replaced by youngster James Lowden, who bowled exceptionally at Hymers and Nigel Walters.
David Simpson was introduced at the other end and struck in his first few overs, bowling Walters around his legs for 12.
Next was Mark Harris who looked to up the run rate.
Hymers reached his 50, but departed soon, caught on the boundary by Lowden off Simpson for 53.
John Douglas and Mark Harris put their foot down. Boundaries off Simpson (2-32) and Blake (0-36) saw the score reach 150 before Harris was bowled by Steve Oxley (1-22).
Paul Hurst and Douglas saw the hosts to 173-4.
Blagdon got off to a great start with John Whittaker hitting four boundaries in the first three overs.
At the other end Andrew Bain was ever watchful, taking 20 balls to notch a run.
Whittaker was in unforgiving mood, challenging bowlers Simon May and Hurst.
The introduction of Adam Went curtailed the run rate as he bowled a pacey spell of short pitched bowling.
At the drinks break, Blagdon had reached 78-0 off 20 overs, but the introduction of Harris saw to Whittaker as he was bowled for 54.
Rory Marr fared little better as Went bowled him for a duck.
With Blagdon well behind the run rate, things looked good for Whitley, but Inpathurai had other ideas.
He launched Jack Jeffrey for two sixes and three fours in his first over, reaching 20 off six balls.
He continued against Harris and May, hitting more boundaries before being caught by Harris on the boundary off May for 32 off 15 balls, a stunning cameo.
With Blagdon back ahead of the run rate they seemed to have the upper hand, but wickets began to fall at regular intervals.
Bain was removed for 42 by Went, Simpson also fell to Went for seven and Went picked up a third wicket in removing Clarke for two.
Lowden and Oxley offered some resistance, but Lowdon was eventually caught and bowled for eight.
The score was 162-7, Stuart Dick was the next man in and hit four of his first ball, leaving Blagdon with eight to win.
A couple of singles later, however, Dick was caught for five off the bowling of Hurst.
Sox soon followed, caught for 11 off Harris.
It was down to the last wicket partnership of Blake and Pryor to score six with three overs remaining.
A maiden by Harris built the pressure before Blagdon picked up three off Hurst’s final over.
With three needed, Blake and Pryor both picked up singles in the first three balls .
With the number 11 on strike, Harris bowled a wide one as Pryor cashed in and secured the win for Blagdon.
A great win, inflicting Bay’s first defeat of a rain affected season.