Bamburgh Castle (111 all out) v Riding Mill (223-2)
IN a summer of rain clouds, the sun finally shone on the Castle Green but it was the visitors who made all the hay, comprehensively out-batting, out-bowling and out-fielding their hosts.
From the moment that the home side lost the toss, it was better not just to throw a veil over proceedings but add a full burka.
Right from the off, the Bamburgh bowlers failed to find a consistent line and length and when they did, the few half-chances that they created failed to find the hands of their fielders.
An opening partnership of 79 from just 15 overs was eventually broken by Neil McDonald only for visiting skipper Michael Cairns go up the gears in compiling a top-class century in partnership with L Hanley (retired on 79), his 104 coming off just 110 balls, including 13 fours as he produced a full array of shots.
It was only after an eighth bowling change that youngster Andrew Wright showed his more experienced team-mates the virtue of straight bowling as he removed Cairns but by then, the damage had been well and truly inflicted.
In reply, Bamburgh needed a good start if they were to stand any chance but to underline just how far out their luck was on the day opener Lakey fell to an incredible diving catch by the inspired Cairns.
Though the other opener Harry Lobb showed good aggression in his knock of 21, a succession of wickets fell as the home batsmen all failed to come to terms with the increasingly low, slow bounce, six of them falling to shots played before the ball arrived and a seventh featuring an almost comical run out.
Only skipper Steve Robinson with a rapid 30 and fellow tail-ender George Shiel (24 not out) offered any real resistance and their partnership of 44 in eight overs at least gave their side a score of three-figures.