Thompson tames Blyth bowlers



Alnwick 195-4

Blyth 75 all out

ALLEN THOMPSON is 63-years-old, and the veteran is continuing to improve with age like a fine wine.

He stroked a splendid 71 from 102 deliveries for Alnwick on Saturday that enabled the home team to a very respectable score of 195-4 from their 50 overs. Thompson was supported in a second wicket partnership of 108 by Michael Brewis, whose innings of 57 came from 144 balls, but he rode his luck well having been dropped on three occasions.

Carl Hetherington was particularly unlucky to see a dolly of a catch dropped at slip.

Blyth's wicket takers were Phil Kinnair 1-25, who struggled with a shoulder injury, David Dent 1-17 from eight excellent overs, Martin Hughes 1-33 and Alan Raffell 1-23.

After tea, Blyth's response moved to 17 when a triple disaster saw Dent, Hughes and Purvis perish without addition. Paul Cormack and Graeme Raffell took the score to 54 when Cormack was caught by Brewis off Roxburgh for 17, and then the middle order capitulated against the accuracy of John Young and some very mixed bowling by Middlemist and Roxburgh.

Raffell was eventually caught behind for 19, and dad Alan Raffell was the only other batsman to make double figures before he was stumped off Oliver for 10, and Blyth were all out for 75 in the 36th over.

Alnwick's best bowler was John Young with 2-25 from 18 accurate overs.

Next week Blyth entertain runaway leaders Leadgate at Plessey Road hoping the injuries to Ian Anderson and Chris Spence will allow them to play.



Annfield Plain 138

Blyth 139-2

BLYTH returned to winning ways at Plessey Road on Saturday with an emphatic eight wicket win against Annfield Plain.

The visitors won the toss and had no hesitation in chosing to bat first, and openers Kevin Carr and Ian Callaghan added 40 runs in 12 overs against the opening attack of Thompson and Reed before Thompson had Callaghan brilliantly caught in the covers by Benn. Two overs later, Benn again provided some excellent fielding that had Ahmed run out for eight.

The score progressed to 76 before Thompson claimed his just reward when he bowled Parker for 10, and then the promising Sammy Khan joined Carr and the score passed 100 with some splendid straight hitting by the youngster.

Peter Robertson, in his first game for three years, was unlucky not to claim at least one wicket in his comeback game, then John Stephens came into the attack with devastating effect as in a seven over spell, he wrapped up the innings with six wickets for nine runs. He had one amazing piece of luck when Perryman blasted back a return catch, only for the ball to be dropped from his hands to lodge between his legs, and the catch was made.

As always, Kevin Thompson bowled tirelessly in the heat taking 3-47 in 18 overs, as the visitors were all out for 138 after 42 overs having collapsed from 105-3 after 31 overs.

John Spencer and Mark Pye opened Blyth's reply in positive mood, before Pye blasted a catch to Callaghan with the score on 29. Stephens added 19 with Spencer before he was bowled by a shooter for 11, and then Nobby Gill came to the middle and he and Spencer played superbly against a varied attack.

The batsmen accumulated the necessary runs by a combination of aggressive stroke play by Gill and sensible batting by Spencer.

Victory was Blyth's in the 37th over when Spencer stroked Khan for a single, and he finished 40 not out from a stay of 127 minutes in his last game of the season. Gill played in his usual flamboyant style to end 45 not out, an innings from 56 balls that included 6 fours.

This Saturday, Blyth travel south to Lanchester, in the hope the team's injury problems will not continue to deplete the squad.