25th Jul 2023

 We are delighted to report that on a rain affected day at Burnmoor at 1216 on Sat 8th July 2023, in his 40th year, Jonny Wightman took his 4th wicket of the innings & 500th NEPL wicket, when Josh Coughlin was caught by Adam Cragg to leave the home side 38-7, batting first. The day did not end well for the Bulls but Wighters finished with his third '5 for' of the season & deservedly joined Lee Crozier, Graeme Bridge, Richard Waite, Matty Muchall, Stephen Humble & Martin Pollard to have achieved this magnificent milestone.

Arriving at South North in 2010 via South Shields (43 wickets) & Boldon, in his first season, Jonny, bowling fast with late movement, equalled the SN record of wickets of 56 by Dewald Pretorius (2002) & Reon King (2004) as SN became National Club Champions with victory over Ealing at Derby & runners up to Swardeston in the National T20 at Southampton. At that point, the first Club side to have reached the finals of the two national competitions in the same season.

Who can forget the 6 hit to the Pavilion in the memorable win over Northern to propel the Bulls to a National ¼ final victory at home en route to success that year in the 2010 final. 

Part of a dynamic opening attack with Stephen Humble, Jonny suffered a side strain in 2013 but bounced back in 2014 with 59 wickets, within 2 of Franklyn Rose's record at that point, & was voted NEPL & Sunday Sun 'Player of the Year' as the Bulls recorded their 9th NEPL title.

A best bowling performance came in 2016 when Gateshead Fell (h) were bowled out for 62, Wightman 8-31. Of equal significance were the early wickets in the national victory at Northampton in 2016 & the national T2O win at Derby in 2017. 16 trophies (8 league, 1 salver, 3 national, 4 T20) in 12 seasons are a testament to his big contribution to an outstanding team effort as the Bulls recorded their 14th NEPL title in 2022.

Immortalised in Harry Pearson's iconic book on NE club cricket "Slipless in Settle" & in song on the return trip from Wallasey in 2022 (" I wanna know..... how you swing that ball ") we are indebted to Jonny's determination; fitness & ultimate bowling skill & offer our very best wishes for him to continue.

JR Wightman: (NEPL to date)

Overs: 2612.4  Maidens: 358  Runs: 9341  Wickets: 501  Avg: 18.64

5 wickets: 22 Best bowling: 8-31 v Gateshead Fell (h) 2016.


2009: 43 (South Shields), 2010: 56, 2011: 27, 2012: 27, 2013: 15, 2014: 59, 2015: 36, 2016: 36, 2017: 39, 2018: 43, 2019: 26, 2021: 31, 2022: 41, 2023 (to date): 22.



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