Superb win as Ashington defeat league leaders

Opener Adam Nichol shares in a century opening stand for Ashington against Greenside. Picture by Ian Appleby
Opener Adam Nichol shares in a century opening stand for Ashington against Greenside. Picture by Ian Appleby
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Ashington got back on track with a superb six-wicket victory over Greenside in the Wellstream Northumberland and Tynesdie Senior League division A2 at Langwell Crescent on Saturday.

Following the defeat at Backworth the previous weekend, the Colliers returned to winning ways against a side who not only arrived in Wansbeck protecting an unblemished record with three wins in as many matches but who also sat at the top of the division.

Put into bat, the Tyne and Wear outfit struggled early and lost opener Wilson from the first ball of the sixth over when he shuffled across his stumps and was trapped lbw to Matty Collins.

However whilst runs were generally hard to come by, Greenside were inspired by left hander Darren Stephenson and he completed a fine half century in the 30th over, out of a score of 82.

Home skipper Greg Williams brought James Richards into the attack for the 21st over and the right armer struck with his fourth delivery, removing Turnbull via a catch at mid-on by Williams.

And after Scott had departed to a good low catch at 84-3, it was another bowling change which brought Ashington the vital wicket of Stephenson, Greenside’s major driving force.

Spinner Chris Watson came on at the Ashbourne Crescent end for the 34th over and removed Stephenson, who was well caught at mid-on by Collins after including 15 boundaries in 69.

After a minor interruption for rain with tea being taken early, play restarted with the visitors looking to push on.

However, in a match now reduced to 49 overs per side, they proceeded to lose five wickets for nine runs with the home outfit pocketing some good catches.

Greenside eventually closed on 150-9 with two wickets each for Stephen Harmison (2-24 from 15 overs); Sonu Singh (2-26 from ten) and James Richards (2-25 from ten) with one each for Collins and Watson.

Ashington also got off to a slow start before Neil Wood and Adam Nichol got into a scoring groove.

It was a vintage performance from Wood with an array of shots, and the left hander completed his 50 with a classic cover drive.

In the 31st over the pair brought up their century opening partnership before Nichol was then caught behind by Stephenson for 29

In the following over, Wood – on 67 – returned a catch to bowler Scott and Greenside had fresh hope when Daniel Grant and Doug Potts fell in quick succession.

But Harmison (17 not out) and Williams (19 not out) took the Colliers to victory in the 42nd over.

Match sponsor Lisa and Mel from the Anglers Arms, Sheepwash.

Ashington 19 points, Greenside five.

Meanwhile, Ashington seconds went down to a 39 runs defeat at Shotley Bridge where the home side’s David Golightly hit an unbeaten 98 and Andrew Collingwood 52 in a total of 232-3.

In reply, Ian Sharkey top scored for the Colliers with 68 and skipper Martin Thewlis struck 45 as Ashington closed on 193-5

On Saturday, Ashington are at home to Morpeth whilst the seconds travel to Percy Main.