Cricket: Dixon's devastating spell sets up Barney win
By Stuart Laundy - Senior Reporter
NYSD League Premier Division
Barnard Castle......... 91-2
WHEN openers James Clarkson and Finn Usher both nicked off without troubling the scorers to leave Barney in a little local difficulty at 0-2 in reply to Marton’s all out total of 87, it looked as though a low scoring thriller was in the offing.
But any nerves among players and supporters were soon calmed as Samarth Seth produced a masterclass of batting, hitting a boundary-laden 66 not out off just 49 balls to see his side home in the 16th over.
Skipper James Quinn settled in for a bit of batting practice and was unbeaten on 22 – a knock that included two cover drives that were extremely easy on the eye.
The victory was set up by opening bowlers Josh Bousfield and Rob Dixon, who accounted for nine of the ten Marton wickets.
It took them a couple of overs to find their length and line on a blameless wicket, but once in the groove, the Marton batsmen offered little resistance.
Jonathan Spillane and Lee Hodgson had 31 on the board in quick time before wickets started to tumble.
Bousfield removed Spillane thanks to Karl Carver’s smart catch at short cover, while Hodgson was unlucky to adjudged LBW to a ball from Dixon which most thought would have gone over the top of the stumps. The umpire, however, disagreed.
Bousfield then had Ben Hutchinson caught behind for a duck and when he knocked over Tom Miller for a single, Marton were suddenly 35-4.
That became 35-5 when Dixon removed Liam Kennedy, caught by Richard Watson, and the game was just about up.
Luke Gettings and Alex Wardell added a few lower order runs but with Dixon going on to claim 6-31, Marton were unable to post three figures.
After a swift turnaround, Clarkson edged Alex Wardell to first slip and Usher wafted carelessly at his first ball to be caught by Wardell at third slip off Gettings.
Enter Seth, who after a quiet couple of weeks was in no mood to let this opportunity pass, cracking 13 boundaries and a towering six into the auction mart car park.
As it turned out, a quick win was timely as the forecast rain arrived earlier than expected.
Marton 87 (R Dixon 6-31, J Bousfield 3-28, K Carver 1-5). Barnard Castle 91-2 (S Seth 66no, J Quinn 22no).
Barnard Castle won by eight wickets
NYSD Division 2
Barnard Castle II.... 267-6
Great Ayton II......... 212-7
BARNEY had to settle for a draw in a high scoring encounter at Great Ayton.
After the early loss of Shane Mullery, skipper Richard Stanwix and Cameron McKnight set about establishing the base for a big total.
Stanwix went for 47 with the score on 94, but Ed Sabey and McKnight kept up the momentum.
Sabey made 42 and McKnight eventually departed for 77, leaving just enough time for Joe Toulson to whack 49 off 29 balls in an unbeaten seventh wicket stand of 50.
With Tom Brooks running through the Great Ayton top order, a victory looked likely when the hosts teetered on 58-5.
However, half centuries from Matthew Tanfield and James Marshall guided the them to safety.
Brooks finished with 4-56 from 15 overs of toil, with McKnight, Daniel Watson and Peter Stanwix each claiming a wicket.
NYSD Sunday Conference North
Barnard Castle............ 242-6
Billingham Synthonia 132-7
JOE Toulson had a day to remember as he blasted 150 from just 116 balls to help Barney to an imposing total.
Opening the batting, Toulson’s knock – his first century for Barney – included 12 boundaries and seven sixes and together with Max Bailey put on 121 for the first wicket.
Billingham never threatened Barney's total – but Barney found wickets difficult to come by, despite the use of seven bowlers.
John Lucas picked up 3-30 as Billingham played out the overs and finished well over a hundred in arrears to draw the game.