THE battle for the division A title took another twist this week, with leaders Pickering A suffering their first defeat of the season, losing out by five runs in a thriller at third-placed Duncombe Park.
This result leaves Pickering A and Scarborough A level on 31 points at the top with two games left to play, so the scene is set for a thrilling end to the season.
In the game at Helmsley, Park batted first and made a slow start losing their opening two batsmen in Liam Hardey’s first over.
When they lost their number three batsmen in the fourth over, also to Hardey who ended with 3-18 in his four overs, things looked bleak for Parks batsmen.
Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals leaving the home side on 35-5.
However due to wayward bowling from the visitors who conceeded 21 extras and some stout batting by James Magson (25 retired) and Adam Leckenby (24) the home side managed to reach 105 in their alloted overs.
In reply Pickering made a solid start but some fine bowling by Park’s Fergus Ward, who returned match-winning figures of 4-7, reduced the visitors to 24-6.
Pickering then began a fightback with Graham Atkinson (26 retired) and Pickering’s man of the match Liam Hardey (27 retired), adding to his efforts with the ball.
With 18 required off two overs Tom Tate and John Lay managed to get the total down to 12 off the last over. When Tate hit the first ball of the over for six it seemed the leaders were back in the game.
However Park bowler Eddie Barnes kept his cool and removed Tate’s middle stump with his second ball and Park ran out winners when Pickering’s last batsmen was run out off the third ball.
Nawton Grange, who are already relegated from the top flight, secured their first win of the season, beating hosts Bridlington A by eight runs in another thrilling match.
The visitors were asked to bat first and the Brid bowlers soon got in their stride with some excellent bowling from Southwell and Traves.
The Grange batsmen were struggling with the excellent bowling and superb fielding.
Once the opening bowlers finished, Woodhouse and Tom Hebden kept up the good bowling, picking up wickets at regular intervals.
Liam Knapton came into the attack picking up three wickets for 14 runs from his four overs.
It was an excellent display from the Bridlington bowlers and superb fielding, especially from young Jack Hebden.
It was the total opposite with the batting. Bridlington got off to the worst possible start, losing both openers before a run was scored.
Jack Fanshaw took it upon himself to get the runs, scoring the first 22 runs himself before he retired on 26 with the score on 30.
Tom Hebden tried to keep the score ticking over but once he’d gone the wickets tumbled until the last two men, D Farrow and J Almond, tried their hardest but to no avail.
Jack Hall was the star man for Nawton, taking three wickets for nine runs and claiming two catches as Brid ended up on 75-9.