Eight wicket win for Ashington cricketers
Philadelphia 52 all out; Ashington 55-2 (Ashington won by 8 wickets)A dynamic performance by Ashington’s bowlers paved the way for the Mighty Acorns to register their third win of the season against Philadelphia at Bunker Hill on Saturday.
Cameron Skinner was at the head of a quartet which also featured Ian Sharkey, Callum Storey and Matty Collins as the attack took a stranglehold on proceedings early doors and skittled out their hosts for a paltry 52, three minutes short of two hours.
The weather forecast was certainly not favourable and on a green-tinged wicket – after Ashington skipper Sean McCafferty had won the toss and invited Philadelphia to take first strike - the Houghton-le-Spring side found themselves well and truly under the cosh from the last ball of the fourth over.
That’s when the irrepressible Cameron Skinner began to rip the heart out of Philadelphia as he made the first of four consecutive incisions which began when Shaun Smith tickled one behind to wicketkeeper Jack McCarthy.
Two overs later, Skinner was hugely indebted to the glove man who strained every sinew as he dived full stretch to his left to hold onto an inside edge from Peter Greenwell.
Things got even better for the visitors as Shaun Hauxwell drove straight to Callum Storey at mid wicket at 16-3 then with six runs added to the total, Dan Pearson had his off stump knocked back and Matty Collins joined in too having Mayank Mishra leg before at 23-5.
Skipper Sean McCafferty bowled Collins and Skinner through their maximum ten overs each before making a double change introducing Storey and Sharkey.
Since joining the North East Premier League, Ashington have noted that teams bat right the way down the order and even though runs remained in short supply, Philadelphia – through Shahid Khan and Thomas Raine - were beginning to show shoots of a recovery as the pair took the score into the forties.
However in the 27th over and after a stand of 21, Storey – in full flow - broke through having Raine well caught by McCafferty back peddling at mid off and in the next, Sharkey had an lbw shout against Khan answered in the affirmative.
Unrelenting, Storey and Sharkey continued to turn the screw with the former holding onto a return catch to send back Matty Noble and Sharkey cleaning up the tail as he claimed the wickets of Adam McGuire and Gary Embleton in the 30th over.
Ashington’s bowling figures made fascinating reading with Collins taking 1-8; Skinner 4-21; Sharkey 3-7 and Storey 2-9.
Philadelphia opened with left arm spinner Mishra and paceman Khan and the latter – looking sharp - struck with McCafferty being bowled early in the second over.
Batting was not easy as Jack Jessop and Scott Pearcey gnawed away at the target - Pearcey the aggressor – but with only nine runs required for victory, the recent newcomer holed out to Pearson at mid wicket for 25.
Matty Storey partnered Jessop and it was the right handed opener who took Ashington to their target, smashing a straight drive for four from the fifth ball of the 18th over.