20th Jun 2023

 NEPL Premier Division: Sat 17th June 2023: SNCC v Castle Eden (h) 110o

Castle Eden 168 ao (47.1 o) Jonathan Malkin 33, Phil Wimpenny 49, Oliver Sampson-Barnes 34: Jonny Wightman 2-39, Sean Tindale 2-37, Calum Fletcher 2-17, Oli McGee 4-28, Lee Crozier 0-42.

SNCC 169-6 (39.2o) Nikhil Gorantla 104*, Chris Hewison 40: Bilawal Iqbal 2-58, Keith Bailey 0-17, Jonathan Malkin 0-34, JP Meade 3-46, Phil Wimpenny 0-9.

SNCC won by 5 wickets- 24 points, Castle Eden 4.

A good, all round bowling performance in which Oli McGee took 4 wickets for the 5th time in 2023 was followed by another master class from Nik Gorantla who scored his third century in 4 innings with 104* to add to 103 v Tynemouth & 134* v Ashington. The Bulls were pleased to welcome Shayne Moseley for his debut.

On a warm day, the visitors were invited to bat. Malkin & Simpson faced Wightman & Tindale. At 15 in the 6th Simpson (8) edged behind off Jonny to give Rob the first of 4 w/k catches. At 38 in the 14th Irwin(5). defending was bowled by Oli's second delivery.

Three wickets then fell in 4 overs. At 55 in the 19th Meade (10). skied Calum  to deep mid on  & was caught by Shayne. One run later Malkin (33 64b 4x4) was caught by Birty at slip, also off Calum. Bailey (0) was bowled in Oli's 5th, 55-6 in the 22nd.

Sean returned to the attack & had Nic Sampson-Barnes (5) edging to Rob at 68. Lunch was taken at 81-6 after 31 overs. At 93 in the 36th Iqbal (14) edged behind off Sean. This became 109-8 when Unsworth (5) was trapped lbw by Oli.

Wimpenny & Oliver Sampson-Barnes attacked putting on 59 for the 9th wicket. Sean, Lee, Oli & Jonny all suffered as Wimpenny 49 (40b, 8x4,1x6) playing good shots & Sampson-Barnes 34 (29b,2x4,4x6) applying the long handle effectively, until at 168 Sampson-Barnes was caught by Lee at  long on off Jonny & at the same score, two balls later, Wimpenny was caught by w/k Rob off Oli.

Calum's accurate spell of 9-4-17-2, taking the important wickets of in form Meade & Malkin, was most effective.

In reply Birty & Shayne faced the seam of Iqbal & Bailey. At 5 in the 3rd over Shayne (3) defending edged to second slip to be caught by O Sampson-Barnes at off Iqbal. Nik stroked 6 x 4 but with the score at 35 in the 9th Birty (4) was lbw to Iqbal.

There followed a match defining partnership of 87 between Nik & Hewi. 89-2 in the 21st as Hewi hit Malkin's off spin for 4 & 6. 117-2 in the 24th as Nik stroked 2x4 & 1x6 off Meade's medium pace. At 122 in the 26th Hewi 40 (47b,6x4,1x6) was caught by Irwin at mid wicket off Meade, another bedrock innings from Chris.

Rob (4) joined Nik but, after one boundary, in the 30th he was caught by Simpson off Meade, 139-4. Nik continued fluently, 9 off the 33rd & 5 off the 34th when Sean (1) edged to first slip to be caught by Unsworth off Meade, 159-5.

Adam (6*) but the winning boundary came from Nik with ball 2 of the 40th. Nik 104* ( 101b,20x4,1x6), Clive, who watched, summarised another excellent innings thus " assured, crisp shots all round the wicket, particularly through the offside & straight, harsh on anything short or over pitched, defended astutely, chanceless ". Amid a good, all round team effort, we salute his special contribution.

After 9 games, the Bulls march on at the top of the Premier Division with a 43 point gap to second placed Chester-Le-Street & 45 to third placed Felling. There is a long way to go. Player availability & results each week seem to have surprises in them. We must continue.

We hope you can join us again on Sat 24th June when SNCC face Hetton Lyons (a) 110 overs, 1100 start.



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