Ashington batsman Ben O’Brien completed a rare hat-trick on Saturday as the Colliers extended their unbeaten run to five matches with a seven-wicket success over Leadgate at Garden Place.
The 26-year-old trainee chartered accountant got his figures right as he won the game for his side with a six hit – the third time he has done soin the opening half of the campaign.
He said: “It was nice but we needed two to clinch victory and I was merely looking to score the winning runs.
“I wasn’t actually trying to hit a six on this occasion but I overheard the Leadgate lads saying, ‘he is going to go for the big hit and put the ball in the nearby factory’.
“When the lad bowled a nice full toss, I had to put the ball out of the ground.
“I know this was the third time this season that this has happened and I’d love the run to continue.
“Things are going very well and it was good to get another win under our belts to take us to the halfway stage of the programme.
“From a personal angle, I’m feeling confident and hitting the ball well and am happy with my form, but then most of the batting order are doing well and scoring runs.
“Everyone is enjoying it. We are getting good results and are playing well.”
Meanwhile Ashington’s right handed batsman Jack Jessop has set himself a target for the second half of the campaign – to be more patient.
The 20-year-old has recorded league scores of 47, 65 and 40 as well as an unbeaten half century in the league cup win over Percy Main .
But he said: “I’d like to push on and turn those scores into hundreds.
“I was very disappointed at the shot which brought about my downfall today because I missed the opportunity to get another half century.
“It was a rush of blood at the time and on reflection was even more disappointing as I could have helped in seeing the team home.”
Jessop, who had a spell with Gateshead Fell before making a return to the Colliers last season, is happy to be in a side who after finishing runners-up in the league last term are currently in third place.
“I’m absolutely loving my time here and couldn’t have made a better move,” he said.
“We didn’t get off to the best of starts today but there is a good atmosphere in the camp. We pulled things back around and credit to the team for sticking to their guns.”
Skipper Greg Williams said the drinks break had come at a good time for his side.
“We had a bit of a chat amongst ourselves and things changed and worked out for us from thereon,” he said.
“Apart from taking a wicket from the second ball of the game, I was disappointed with our performance for the first 28 overs.
“At one stage I thought Leadgate were looking to hit us for 250 to 260 as they were in a good position, especially when the wicket was ‘doing a lot’ early on.
“We didn’t adapt or perform very well in the field, but after drinks we changed the bowling and they didn’t score many in the last 22 overs.
“It was always going to be an awkward score to chase down on that wicket because the ball was ‘popping’ a little bit, but the lads put the bad ball away and I was impressed.
“Leadgate is a tough place to play cricket. It is not easy so I’m delighted to come away with maximum points.”