Rain stops play and denies Ash chance of victory

Cricket stumps.
Cricket stumps.

Ashington looked to be on course to inflict defeat on last season’s league champions Swalwell on Saturday - until an untimely intervention by the weather scuppered their hopes and resulted in a frustrating draw.

On a humid afternoon, a terrific performance by all of the Mighty Acorns bowlers had seen them dismiss the Derwenthaugh outfit for only 104 – then things turned after the tea interval when Ashington began their reply.

Casting an eye towards a gloomy skyline in the background, the Colliers had hardly began their reply when rumbles of thunder coupled with lightening led to the umpires taking the players off to the dressing rooms.

When play recommenced, Ashington lost Dan Grant in the third over, bowled by a beauty from Guy Saxton. Jack Jessop and Jack McCarthy chipped away at the target adding 34 until the latter chopped a delivery from spinner Nicky Phillips onto his stumps in the 17th over.

With the weather closing in, James Harmison was sent in at number four to try and speed up the run chase but from the first ball he received from Phillips, the right hander returned a catch to the bowler which he pocketed low down.

Skipper Ben Harmison partnered Jessop but shortly afterwards, rain forced the players off again. Amidst grey skies and patiently looking on as the rain continued to fall, stumps were eventually drawn and the game abandoned.

*Ashington remain in second place in the Northumberland & Tyneside Cricket League’s first division, 22 points behind Shotley Bridge.