NE Premier League: Shurben leads by example with superb century as Sunderland start in style

Hetton Lyons batsman Jack Burnham is beaten by the bowler against Eppleton. Picture by Kevin Brady
Hetton Lyons batsman Jack Burnham is beaten by the bowler against Eppleton. Picture by Kevin Brady

Sunderland enjoyed an excellent start to the First Division season, with a 77-run win over Gateshead Fell at Ashbrooke on Saturday.

Batting first, they piled up a massive 274-2.

Dan Shurben had an opening day to savour, firing a brilliant, unbeaten 139.

Fellow opener Greg Applegarth added 50 and Ramanpreet Singh 45 in an impressive batting effort from the Wearsiders.

In response, Fell were bowled out for 197, with Zaheer Shahbaz bagging 4-54, Mark Turner 3-58 and Elliot Smith 3-22.

Stephen Devenport (43) and Jonathan Roseby (66no) offered the only real batting resistance.

Burnmoor started well with a 17 run success at Boldon.

Moor, batting first, slipped to 6-2, but Paul Craig’s 90-ball knock of 46 steadied the ship, helped by three boundaries. Marc Symington added 18, with Kevin Dixon making 14 and Liam Dixon 12 as Moor were all out for 126 in 51 overs.

Durham paceman Barry McCarthy bagged 3-40 for Boldon, with new signing Gary Scott taking 2-21.

Boldon were 23-3 early in their reply, but 30 from opener Scott, on his debut, and 23 from Nathan Hewitt gave the hosts hope. McCarthy added 17, but Boldon were short on 109 all out.

Harry Munton stole the show with 4-26, backing debutant Symington (3-34) and Liam Dixon (2-22).

New boys Castle Eden started their campaign at Burnopfield, with a six-wicket defeat after being put in to bat first.

Saeed Bin Nasir was the undoubted star for Castle Eden, powering 11 fours and a six in a 139-ball 92. Robbie McGlasham (14) and Phil Wimpenny (19) helped them to 152 all out in 54.5 overs.

Ex-Durham stars Neil Killeen (5-28) and Callum Thorp (4-26) shone with the ball.

Burnopfield had three ducks in their reply, but Lee Whitfield’s unbeaten 95, off 154 balls with 15 fours, steered them home, supported by Cole Pearce (29) and Jonathan Pears (16no). Jeremy Warner (3-35) was the pick of the bowlers.

South Shields slipped to a seven-wicket defeat to Willington at Wood Terrace.

Luke Elliott fired six boundaries in a 108-ball 68 to lead Shields to 183 all out in the 55th over.

Opener Muhammad Afaq had four fours and a six in 28, with Sam Embleton (25 off 53 balls) and Nabeel Aziz (32 off 54 balls, with three fours), offering good support down the order, adding 50 for the seventh wicket.

Peter Leggett (3-47) and Gerasimos Fatouros (3-40) starred with the ball for Willington, while Steven Anderson took 2-51.

A second-wicket partnership of 87 between Alderson (45, with seven fours) and Fatouros (86no, with eight fours and a six, off 88 balls) guided the visitors home in the 43rd over, backed by Jack Howell (20) and James Stock (15no).

Brandon were comfortable nine-wicket winners at home to Blaydon, who were skittled for just 70 in 49 overs.

Joe Reynolds top-scored with 24 for Blaydon, with only Jamie Wightman (11no) also reaching double figures as Stephen Humble, Ryan Pringle and Oscar Dewhurst plundered three wickets apiece.

Brandon needed just 11.4 overs to ease to victory, thanks to Gordon Muchall’s 38 not out with four fours and two sixes, backed by Matthew Brown (16no).