Alnwick (111-5) v Benwell & Walbottle (108 all out)
Wellstream Northumberland and Tyneside Senior Cricket League, Division A2
AFTER two weeks of inactivity, the weather relented and Alnwick were finally able to get back to cricket.
And they returned to action with a bang, beating Benwell & Walbottle by five wickets, climbing above their opponents in the table in the process.
The fact that Alnwick were weakened by the absence of Brewis, Guy, Green and Matthewson made the maximum-points victory even more impressive.
The Alnwick bowlers, backed up by some competent fielding, were able to dismiss the visitors for 108 with O’Hara (4-39), Graham (2-18), Kelly (3-17) and Roxburgh (1-21) the beneficiaries of a softish wicket.
Mention should also be made of David Wright who, although wicketless, returned the miserly figures of 0-5 off eight overs, with six of these maidens.
The batsmen never allowed the Benwell bowlers to dictate with Kelly, Graham and Woods dominating, eventually attaining the required total in 36.3 overs.
O’Hara won the toss and elected to field – a decision that bore early fruit as Graham dismissed the two openers for 15.
Robbie and professional Hassan Raza took the score to 62 but before they could capitalise, Raza was well caught by Wright.
Reed fell without addition and when Robbie was smartly stumped by the alert Armin, the remaining batsmen were unable to react to the bowling of Kelly and Roxburgh and the innings ended tamely on 108 in the 48th over.
In reply, Alnwick, with a new opening partnership of Graham and Kelly, never allowed the bowlers to settle into any rhythm and scored 28 before Graham was out for 14, including three fours.
Kelly continued to bat aggressively before he was caught and bowled for 22. His knock included five fours.
Robertson and Wright moved the total to 58 when both were out.
Andrew Scott and Rob Woods then produced the match-winning partnership, with Scott prepared to bat cautiously and allow Woods to play attacking shots.
Unfortunately, Scott was run out when victory was assured, leaving Woods and Roberts to see Alnwick safely home.
The match was sponsored by the Glendale Micro Brewery and Alnwick are indebted to Owen Jackson and his staff for their support.
Benwell & Walbottle
D Anderson lbw b Graham 2
A Khazi c O’Hara b Graham 4
G Robbie st Armin b O’Hara 37
H Raza c Wright b O’Hara 27
S Reed lbw b O’Hara 0
S Burkul b O’Hara 4
M Brown b Kelly 8
C Smith b Kelly 6
N Rashid c Armin b Roxburgh 2
C Robson b Kelly 1
E Abdusamad not out 4
Total (all out) 108
Bowling: D Graham 7-1-18-2; S O’Hara 15-5-39-4; J Roxburgh 9-1-21-1; D Wright 8-6-5-0; C Kelly 8.1-3-17-3.
C Kelly c&b Rashid 22
D Graham c Khazi b Rashid 14
D Wright lbw b Reed 9
T Robertson b Raza 11
AW Scott run out 7
R Woods not out 38
D Roberts not out 1
Total (5wkts) 111
Bowling: M Brown 5-2-21-0; N Rashid 13-1-42-2; C Smith 4-1-4-0; H Raza 5-2-9-1; S Reed 8-3-15-1; C Robson 1-0-6-0; D Anderson 0.3-0-8-0.
Alnwick (20pts) beat Benwell & Walbottle (3pts) by five wickets.