Twos refuse to throw in towel

Backworth II (145 all out) v Alnwick II (169-9)

Wellstream Northumberland and Tyneside Senior Cricket League, Division B2

ALNWICK travelled to Backworth in high spirits after a comprehensive victory last time out and immediately looked to make use of a good batting surface when Stewart won the toss and decided to bat.

However, the visitors were soon in trouble after Stewart himself, and then fellow leading run-scorer Thompson both were dismissed with only 20 on the board.

Laurence Reeves and Chris Woods tried to re-build the innings against some fine swing bowling from Liddle (4-41).

Reeves (16) again timed the ball nicely but departed thanks to a spectacular one-handed catch by Collins.

Woods carried on batting to make a patient 23 trying to hold the innings together around the attacking stroke play of Lakey (15) and Grey (18).

Alnwick to their credit never gave in and continued to fight all the way down the order with further contributions including Lobb (19), Barker (18) and Roxburgh (16), setting a target of 170 for Backworth.

At the halfway stage, Alnwick felt they were slightly under par.

This was emphasised when the hosts got off to a flying start, with Khan taking a liking to the bowling of Grey, who continued from where he left off last week with a succession of high full-tosses leading to another warning from the umpire.

It wasn’t until the introduction of Mark ‘Sharapova’ Roxburgh (2 for 36) that the run rate significantly decreased, with him removing the dangerous Khan and Woods dismissing Rudd at the other end thanks to a memorable catch from Thompson.

Although Alnwick reduced the scoring rate, the home side appeared to be favourites at 100-3. However, the visitors again refused to give in and through Barker and then Stewart; who found himself on a hat-trick twice but to no avail.

Woods (2 for 30) returned to remove Gaur before Stewart finished the game, clean bowling Morgan to finish with sensational figures of five wickets for just four runs.

Alnwick celebrated a memorable victory, knowing that they appeared to be out of the game on several occasions only to fight back in what was a close contest.