Singh shines in the sun for Ashington

Ashington opener Anirudh Singh blasted 14 fours and a six in his unbeaten 80 in the comfortable win over Leadgate. Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com

Ashington opener Anirudh Singh blasted 14 fours and a six in his unbeaten 80 in the comfortable win over Leadgate. Picture by Ian Appleby - www.ianapplebyimages.com

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Anirudh Singh led Ashington to a comprehensive nine wickets victory over Leadgate at a sun-baked Langwell Crescent ground on Saturday.

After smashing an unbeaten century the previous evening in the Colliers’ semi-final win over Tynedale in the Bobby Smithson Northumberland County Cup, Singh continued where he left off as he scorched his way to an undefeated 80 from 66 deliveries against the Durham side.

The overseas player hit 14 fours before finishing the game off in style with a massive six from the fifth ball of the 23rd over.

Apart from the odd blip at Tynedale and Burnopfield, Ashington have played well all season – but they have now hit a particularly good seam after putting the seal on their third success in a row.

Greg Williams once again called wrong on the toss of the coin – with the basement club opting to take first strike on a glorious afternoon in Wansbeck.

However Craig Wood – bowling up the bank – struck in only his second over, bowling left hander Burdon off stump and shortly afterwards, a stupendous one handed and low diving catch by wicketkeeper Daniel Grant accounted for Robbie Hockaday with the score on 14.

Callan McCabe and Sam Stephenson steadied the ship but after the pair had added 46 for the third wicket, Singh had the former well caught at first slip by Ben O’Brien for 22.

Peter Finch weighed in, pegging back David Richardson’s middle stump, then the same bowler saw Darren Benford sky the ball up in the air which was safely pouched by Williams at mid-off.

The home skipper brought himself into the attack and struck in his first over.

Stephenson, who had battled away and who had completed his half century, miscued next ball with Grant pocketing the opportunity.

Leadgate’s hundred came up in the 35th but the fall of wickets continued with Shaun Wood trapped lbw to Williams before Callum Storey – returning from the top end – cleaned up the tail.

He bowled Lee Harrison middle stump; had Steven Smith caught behind by Grant then two balls later, trapped last man Gary Dixon leg before with the visitors ending all out on 124.

Storey led the bowling with 4-26 from 8.5 overs during an afternoon of toil in the sunshine, but he was well supported by the efforts of Finch (2-22 from eight); Williams (2-17 from five); Singh (1-23 from ten) and Craig Wood (1-16 from five).

In reply, Neil Wood was trapped lbw by Harrison in the sixth over for ten before Singh generated his own form of heat on the Leadgate bowlers with some glorious shots.

He dominated an unbroken stand of 95 with Jessop, who gave an assured performance with the bat as he ended unbeaten on 24.

Match Sponsor: Brian Shotton Dairies Limited.

Ashington 20 points

Leadgate one point

On Saturday, Ashington are at home to Tynedale.