Seaham Park’s Division Two promotion bandwagon is gathering momentum, with two more victories lifting them 46 points clear at the top.
Saturday’s win over fellow challengers Ushaw Moor gave the clearest indication yet that that Park have the team to do the job this time around.
Moor were bowled out for 177 in 48.5 overs, Aussie Matt Dyke making 73 of those runs from 79 balls.
Park skipper Dave Hanson picked up four of the wickets to fall, and he was also there on 33 not out when the winning runs were scored, Kit Allan (67 from 52 balls) and Siddharth Chitnis (53 from 53 balls) having set up the eventual six-wicket win in a free-flowing partnership that ensured there were no time pressures brought into the equation.
Yesterday, Park cruised to a seven-wicket win over Silksworth, who were skittled for 88 despite an impressive, unbeaten 46 from Paul Bradford. Chitnis stole the show with 4-27.
Ryhope endured a frustrating weekend – following on from their bye week. They posted 230-7 against Peterlee on Saturday, but, in a contest lasting a total of 78 overs, there never looked likely to be an outright result, and it was John Minnis’s 100 that caught the eye, the 112-ball innings including 11 fours and a six. Peterlee closed on 174-4
Ryhope took 10 points from the match which ensured they held on to second spot on Saturday night as Burnopfield were also held to a draw.
But Ryhope suffered a disappointing 17-run defeat yesterday after bowling out Evenwood for 135, when Dylan Buckthorp and Josh Dick both plundered four wickets.
In reply, Connor Pearson hit 36, but Ryhope were all out for just 118 as Naseer and Redkar both had four-wicket hauls.
With Burnopfield being beaten by a Marsden side inspired by Nick Quinn (4-31 and 55) yesterday, Ushaw Moor moved up to third place as they defeated Whiteleas by five wickets.
Whiteleas put the brakes on Burnopfield’s promotion bid on Saturday as they held out on 132-7 from 36 overs after being set a target of 211-2 by the visitors, Gareth Breese once again the main man with four fours and four sixes in an unbeaten 73.
Owen Peterson was every bit as impressive for Leas, hitting 10 fours and four sixes on his way to 78 before he became one of Callum Thorp’s four victims.
Murton were beaten by 28 runs at Marsden on Saturday, with Chris Mann (113no) and Marc Symington (69no) leading the hosts to 200-1 before the visitors fell for 172, despite valiant efforts from Chris Winn (64), Lewis Aiken (44) and Alistair Watson (31), with Quinn bagging 5-32.
Yesterday, Murton made 214-6 against Littletown, with Winn (70) backed by Ian King (42), Aidan Vout (30) and Jordan Vout (32).
Littletown replied with 183-8 as Watson and Winn took three wickets apiece. Shashikant Kadam (70) and Dan Pearson (50) starred with the bat for a side who drew with Evenwood on Saturday.
After Evenwood posted 167-8, with Redkar firing an unbeaten 91, Littletown stood firm on 154-7 thanks largely to Matt Dench (31), Philip Bennett (54no) and Peter Preece (37).
Silksworth went down by four wickets at home to Langley Park after making 150-4, with Bradford (58) and Barrass (41no) top-scoring.
Paul Elliot was the hero as newcomers Houghton secured their first win of the season, at the 11th attempt, the newcomers sinking Langley Park yesterday.
Elliot hit 55 not out, backed by Ross Bainbridge (34) as Houghton made 262-8, then Langley were rocked by the impressive bowling of Elliot (5-13) and David Nield (4-52) as they were all out for 156.