Paul Rutherford produced a ‘Man of the Match’ performance for Ashington against Lanchester on Saturday which ensured that the Mighty Acorns kept the pressure on the leading pack at the head of the Go North East Northumberland & Tyneside Senior League’s A1 Division.
The victory - coupled with Tynedale’s defeat at Lintz - moved Ashington up to third in the table, 29 points behind second placed Shotley Bridge and 43 adrift of leaders Swalwell
With the Colliers in all sorts of trouble at 80-8 in the 33rd over, the ageless Rutherford went into bat at number ten and emerged as second top scorer after hitting five boundaries and one six in a game changing and stunning knock of 30 from only 33 deliveries.
He forged an invaluable partnership with James Harmison helping to take the home total up to a more respectable 128.
For the visitors, Greg Halliday went nap bagging 5-37; Arran Halliday took 2-34 with one wicket each for Kieron Taylor (1-22) and Sam Crooks (1-6).
Ashington needed a good start – and Matty Collins and Callum Storey both took early wickets.
Lanchester were 36-5, and that became 45-6 after an outstanding piece of athleticism by McCafferty to run out Taylor. At 88-8. Lovell took a single to complete his 50 but in the next over he was stumped.
It was all over in the 35th over as Ashington won by 34 runs with Storey (3-26), Collins (2-17), Rutherford (3-7) and James Harmison (1-20).