ROCK ON TOMMY: Tommy Merryweather in action for Barney on Saturday against Great Ayton. The youngster bagged four wickets in a lively opening spell before the game was abandoned due to the rain
ROCK ON TOMMY: Tommy Merryweather in action for Barney on Saturday against Great Ayton. The youngster bagged four wickets in a lively opening spell before the game was abandoned due to the rain

Barnard Castle CC
BARNEY were attempting to win the Kerridge Cup for the fourth time in eight seasons. For much of the 2021 final against Hartlepool on Sunday it looked as though they would do so, continuing a summer of immense success.
But in a dramatic finale with the finishing line in sight, they lost their last five wickets in 20 balls. It was a collapse which even the addition of five penalty runs could not evert and Barney found themselves defeated by nine runs.
By the end, it looked slightly as if it were a match too far for the side. Throughout the summer, they have kept winning, sometimes from seemingly impossible situations. In the Kerridge Final, they were always in touch but there was a jaded, unfamiliar air to their cricket.
While Hartlepool’s score of 179-7 was well within Barney’s reach on a typically flat Hartlepool pitch which encouraged batsmen but did not deny bowlers hope, it could and perhaps should have been 20 runs fewer. Hartlepool, short of three first choice players, were dogged in their perseverance.
The response was solid but never dominant. The loss of the top three before the end of the 13th over with 137 still wanted demanded caution. The outcome afterwards was probably determined by the run outs with direct hits of both Samarth Seth and Karl Carver.
Barney chose to bowl on winning the toss, hoping to take advantage of any latent moisture in the pitch. They were rewarded with a wicket in the second over.
Hartlepool then produced a series of small but important partnerships. The highest was 48 for the second wicket but there was 31 for the third, 25 for the fourth, 23 for the sixth.
The departure of leading scorer Paul Braithwaite for 46, caught superbly by Josh Bousfield swooping low at mid-off, did not dent their resolve. They were determined to make Barney work.
This continued in the field. But when Seth and Carver were together, sharing a stand of 61, the highest of the match, it seemed the odds had shifted. Then disaster. Seth hit the ball straight to a fielder and decided to dash for a single. The throw was on target, he was out by a yard.
With five runs an over still wanted, Barney had to keep the board ticking over. But when only three runs came from the 29th and 30th overs, the pressure increased.
Richard Borrowdale, who had briefly flourished, was caught trying to inject some pace. The entry of Finn Usher quickly reasserted Barney.
Playing with skill and intelligence, finding the gaps, running hard, he and Carver left Barney needing 23 from five overs with five wickets in hand.
Instead of serene progress to victory there was calamity. Carver was run out by another direct hit going for a single, two balls later Usher chopped on, Rob West feathered one behind.
The target looked distant but suddenly hove into view again when the umpires added five penalty runs because of Hartlepool’s slow over rate. It threatened a controversial finish: Barney now needed ten from two overs with two wickets left.
But it was Braithwaite who had the last word, and confirmed his man-of-the-match award by winning two lbw verdicts with the first two balls of the 39th over. Hartlepool had won the Kerridge for the first time since 1991.
G Shaw b Merryweather 2, A Tebbett b Carver 21, P Braithwaite c Bousfield b Usher 46, J Richardson c Quinn b Usher 26, G Relton c Sabey b Carver 8, T Gavin c Sabey b Merryweather 7, H Smith not out 35, O Mole b Carver 6, M Adamson not out 6, Extras 22, Total (40 overs) 179 for 7
R Dixon 8-0-32-0, T Merryweather 8-0-36-2, R West 8-0-45-0, K Carver 8-1-27-3, F Usher 8-0-35-2
J Clarkson lbw Mole 12, J Bousfield c Relton b Braithwaite 2, J Quinn b Jackson 11, S Seth run out 31, K Carver run out 46, R Borrowdale c Mole b Rathbone 18, F Usher b Adamson 16, R West c Gavin b Adamson 1, T Merryweather not out 6, R Dixon lbw Braithwaite 1, E Sabey lbw Braithwaite 0, Extras 26 Total (38.2 overs) 170 all out
P Braitwaite 7.2-1-22-3, O Mole 8-2-39-1, M Jackson 8-1-39-1, M Adamson 7-0-34-2, J Rathbone 8-0-30-1
Hartlepool won by 9 runs

Barney v Great Ayton
BARNEY had to be content with nine points from their match against Great Ayton after the match was abandoned with their opponents in the perilous position of 50-6.
However, Richmond’s unexpected loss at Billingham Synthonia means that Barney still have a realistic chance of taking the NYSD Premier League title.
This weekend’s fixtures are crucial. Barney are at relegation-threatened Normanby Hall on Saturday and on Monday entertain Richmond.
If results have gone the right way for both sides on Saturday it promises to be a thriller.
Meanwhile, the second XI, with an outside chance of promotion from Division One, entertain Bedale on Saturday.