Stiffs crowned champions with win at Sacriston

9th Sep 2019

The Second XI were crowned champions of Division 2 for the first time since 2016 with a 75-run win at Sacriston on Saturday.

Having lost the toss and been invited to bat, South North lost John Harbottle (6) early when he feathered Ian Jones behind, but Sam Dale and Dave Edwards were able to move the score to 61 before Dale was trapped in front by Fort for 36. Alex Weetman was unfortunate to fall LBW to the same bowler for 5, and Edwards (41) was bowled advancing down the pitch by Husband to leave the score at 110-4. Ryan Sidney-Wilmot fell soon after when he chipped the off-spin of Cordner to mid-on for 15, but captain Ruaidhri Fletcher and Parth Mannikar were able to move the score to 144 on a pitch taking plenty of turn when the skipper was bowled through the gate by Cordner for 14. Mannikar fell for a well-made 29, but Thirlwell (7) chewed up crucial overs and a late flourish by Richard Brook (12) helped the side to a total of 186 when they were all out in the 55th over.

In the absence of several bowlers, Owen Hollins (4-32) and Ruaidhri Fletcher (2-29) shared the new ball, and the skipper grabbed the key wicket of Hubber LBW with the score on 15. A devastating spell followed from Hollins as he had Peel and Brown caught by Dale at gully, trapped Small LBW and clean bowled Straughair for 0. Sacriston had been reduced to 33-6 when Fort was out LBW to Fletcher, but Dodds and Jones helped move the score to 60 when the former was given out LBW off the bowling of Brook (2-35). Jones threatened to challenge the South North total with some brutal striking, but when he was stumped by Mannikar off the bowling of Dale (2-25) for a brisk 40 the Sacriston challenge fell away. Husband fell LBW to Brook, and the winning moment arrived when Jackson skied Sam Dale and was well caught at point by Hollins.

A brilliant season for the 2ndXI who have now won both the league and the Banks Bowl. They’ll look to close out the campaign with a win when they host Washington at Roseworth Terrace on Saturday (12:15pm start).

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