Rain ends torment early for Ashington

ASHINGTON were routed for their lowest score of the season on Saturday at Langwell Crescent against Sacriston before incessant rain forced the match to be abandoned.

All rounder Stephen Boyd hit almost half of his side’s runs with a top score 42 as the Colliers were bowled out for 85 from the first ball of the 36th over.

The Durham side may have been left frustrated by the weather but their haul of ten points nevertheless put them top of the table.

After a steady but unspectacular start, Ashington’s wickets began to fall in the seventh over when Jack Jessop – who had just changed his bat – was caught behind next ball for ten by wicketkeeper Brian Potts off ex-Durham medium pacer Melvyn Betts.

Martin Sexton fell leg before to the same bowler in the ninth, and the procession continued.

Simon Prudhoe was bowled by professional Kendal Ballard in the tenth; Andrew Gray caught by Potts trying to hook Ballard in the 12th; Scott Dunn fell to a good low catch by Peter Scape in the 17th and skipper Michael Thewlis was bowled two balls later by Betts from a delivery which kept low.

All of which left the home side looking at a sorry looking scoreboard of 33-6.

Boyd and Daniel Grant tried to restore some semblance of respectability with the former lofting one six which hit the pavilion steps as well as six fours.

However after the pair had added 46, left arm spinner Ryan Moralee got in on the act to wreak further havoc as he took a hat-trick.

He brought the curtain down on Boyd’s innings via a successful lbw shout; trapped Craig Wood next ball in identical style then bowled Callum Storey, who had played forward.

Six runs later the innings came to a close as Grant was caught by Ballard at slip off Graham Hubber after the ball had looped up into the air off wicketkeeper and captain Potts.

Betts ended with glowing figures of 4-13 from a 15 overs stint which included eight maidens; Moralee took 3-17 from eight overs, four maidens whilst Ballard’s return was 2-36 from nine overs.

The players had hardly left the field for the tea interval when the rain began to fall steadily, and two hours later, shortly after 5.30pm, stumps were drawn.

Ashington will be thankful for small mercies.

The Colliers picked up five points, but their return would have been less if the match had been completed and had resulted in a Sacriston victory.

Meanwhile Ashington seconds’ match at Sacriston was washed out without a ball being bowled.

On Saturday Ashington travel to face Swalwell.