Academy impress but lose out to experienced Sunderland

16th May 2022

SNCC Academy 167-5 (40o) Eashan Ragbir 34, Jan Ozmen 87, Ben Hobbs 23: Haseeb Yaqoob 0-10, James Houmark 2-38, Thomas Bowman 1-26, Elliott Woods 1-32.

Sunderland 3rd X1 168-6 (36.3o) Brett Hutchinson 65, Kyle Hutchinson 31, James Houmark 15: Mo Shahbaz 2-28, Ben Hobbs 3-12, George Gray 1-26.

Sunderland won by 4 wickets 16 points: SNCC 7.

Skipper Tris Meears-White won the toss & chose to bat. Debuts were given to Charlie Wilson & Albie McPate, with Eashan Ragbir taking the gloves & Mani enjoying his first outing of the season. On a wicket where driving was risky &, against a sound opening seam attack, in which Yaqoob conceded only 10 runs in his 7 overs, SN lost Charlie Wilson (1), who had volunteered to open, at 13 in the 6th.

Eashan was going nicely, 5x4 in his 34, but at 39, in the 11th, he too was caught. Tris (4) departed at 57 in the 19th. There followed a stirring partnership of 85 between Jan Ozmen & Ben Hobbs, with Jan being particularly punishing on anything short of a length until at 142 in the 36th Ben was caught. George (9*) offered a promising cameo as Jan continued until he was dismissed from the second ball of the last over for a magnificent 87 (104b, 10x4), his best ever innings for the Bulls. 165 seemed defendable on an up & down surface.

Sunderland lost opener Indarajah(19) bowled by Mo, at 21 in the 7th. Then, bowling straight & hitting the seam, Ben Hobbs took 3 wickets in 5 balls, just failing to get a hat trick; a catch by George, one by Ben off his own bowling & a bowled left the home team in some difficulty at 36-4. Another fine spell from Ben (U15) 6-2-12-3, building on his 4 fer for the 2's on Saturday.

A partnership of 55 between Brett Hutchinson & James Houmark resisted spells from Mani & Jack, until at 91 Houmark (15) was bowled by George, flighting his off breaks nicely. Promising overs but no breakthrough for Albie & Varun as the Hutchinsons B & K took Sunderland to the brink of victory in the 36 th, before the left-handed Brett H was caught by George off Mo for 65 (90b, 10x4). The winning runs came in the 37th.

The fielding mostly stood up to the test &, although some chances were missed, it was heartening for Tris to be told by the umpires at the end of the game how impressed they were with 'our youngsters'.

Congratulations to those who took responsibility to play unfamiliar roles for the team. South North need selfless cricketers too!

The Academy's next Sunday Division 1 match is at home to Sacriston on 22 nd May. We must continue!



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