Chester-le-Street crank up the pressure at the top of the league with win over South Shields

Chester-le-Street leap-frogged two of their closest rivals in the title race and made up four crucial points on the leaders Newcastle, after their five-wicket home win over South Shields at Ropery Lane.
Silksworth bowler Ben Lobbing in action against Marsden.Silksworth bowler Ben Lobbing in action against Marsden.
Silksworth bowler Ben Lobbing in action against Marsden.

The Cestrians are now on a roll with three wins in July so far, and now move into second place, but still have 31 points to make up.

Shields won the toss and decided to bat, with opener Timothy David scoring a brilliant century, his fourth league ton this year, (113) including 13 fours and three sixes off 134 balls and a cultured 67 from Gordon Muchall, gave Shields a respectable total of 232-9.

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Liam Simpson (4-49) and Gurman Randhawa (3-75) led the way, with some excellent bowling.

At one stage with Chester on 103-3, the game was evenly balanced, but Richard Waite with (57), Quentin Hughes (53no) and Liam Simpson with (46no), including an 89 run partnership ensured a vital win.

Whitburn entertained the leaders and still unbeaten Newcastle. The home side won the toss and asked the visitors to bat and they made a huge score of 324-7.

Nick Hobson’s century of 124, including 18 fours and 1 six and Michael Allan with 94, including 12 fours and five sixes off just 84 balls, was instrumental in the score and they put on 169 for the second wicket.

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Mark Elliott under the circumstances, returned decent bowling figures of 3-48.

Whitburn then batted reasonably well, with Lee Henderson (43) and Joseph Coyne (59), in their total of 209, but a devastating spell from man of the match Michael Allan with 4-36, including a hat-trick, paved the way for the win, despite the tail wagging a bit for the home side, with 49 runs scored for the last two wickets.

Durham Academy had an excellent win against the current champions and title challengers South North.

Batting first, the champions had an opening stand of 69 between Simon Birtwisle (34) and skipper Marcus North (69) and then John Graham with (45) and James Miller (62) bravely set the Academy a demanding total of 232 to win.

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An unbeaten 83 from opener Ross Greenwell, including 8 fours and 43 from Josh Coughlin and a terrific quick-fire 39 from Liam Trevaskis, which included six fours and two sixes, helped them to their target, despite a brilliant spell of bowling from Lee Crozier (5-58).

Earlier they had been on 49-3, so to recover and win liked they did, showed character from the young team.

At the bottom, Eppleton had to make do with a losing draw in their “derby” with near neighbours Hetton Lyons.

The Lyons set a formidable score of 260-3, with a brilliant opening stand of 183, between Jonathan Malkin (88) and skipper Jarvis Clay (95).

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Mahesh Rawat then scored 32 not out and the scene was set.

The home side started very positively, with an opening stand of their own of 103, with Liam Dixon making 32 and a great knock from Abhijai Mansingh scoring 82, but Ben Whitehead put paid to any chance of a win, with a spell of 4-34 off his 16 overs and the home side ended with 205-8.

Benwell Hill went down to Stockton on Teesside and were bowled out for just 124, chasing 192 to win.

Sameet Brar taking 4-46 for the Hill and in-form skipper Kyle Coetzer top scoring with 31.

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Tynemouth unbeaten in five games and in third, hammered bottom club Gateshead Fell by 101 runs, with Matthew Brown (80) and Tahir Khan (47no) top scoring for the home side, in a total of 237-9 declared.

Man of the match Tahir Khan, then took a brilliant spell of 6-30, to ensure the win.