Rain fails to dampen spirits as Richmondshire beat Billingham

It was unfortunate that the most rain affected day of the season so far was selected as the club sponsors’ day.

Nevertheless, there was another Richmondshire victory to watch once play got underway.

The start was delayed until 3pm with the match reduced to 36 overs. Having won the toss and chose to bat the Richmondshire openers found life difficult as the Billingham bowlers took advantage of the swing provided by the humid atmosphere.

Captain Bob Carr’s wicket fell with five on the board. Tom Dowson (25) and Mike Layfield (26) played a more watchful innings than their usual attacking style to get the score to 42 before Mike was out lbw. Tom’s wicket fell at 78 which brought together Gary Pratt (79 not out) and Sam Winter (62) in the partnership of the match.

The pair had put on 114 when Sam was out. A quick 34 from 14 balls from Owen Kelly helped take the score to 262 for 6 after 36 overs.

A further rain interruption reduced the game to 30 overs but Billingham failed to last even that long being bowled out for 107 after 27 overs. The first wicket fell on two and when Josh Dowson clean bowled the danger man Tahir the writing was on the wall.

The Richmondshire spinners then took over to run through the batting line up. Shafi taking four for 20 and Tom Brooks four for 24, with two stumpings and two catches for keeper Tom Dowson.

The 25 points kept Richmondshire top of the table but with Middlesbrough and Barnard castle also taking 25 the position of the top three remains unchanged with six games left in the season.

On Wednesday evening Richmondshire 1sts had suffered their first setback of the season in cup competitions losing the Premier 100 semi-final against Thornaby. Largely due to a remarkable innings by Thornaby’s professional Husnain Bukhari, who scored 108 not out in a total of 136.

Richmondshire had got off to a reasonable start with 31 from Tom Dowson, 29 from Gary Pratt and 31 from Mike Layfield. Unfortunately, the innings stalled and wickets fell as Richmondshire looked to accelerate. Their total of 135 for nine always looked short of what was needed and Thornaby knocked off the runs in 81 balls.

The other favorites suffered a similar fate against Billingham when professional Tahir scored 174 from a total of 224.

Richmondshire have the chance of revenge against Thornaby this Wednesday when they meet in the Collingwood Hundred final.

The 2nds game at Sedgefield had started on time but couldn’t be finished as the rain came later. Put in first Richmondshire had struggled to 133 all out and Sedgefield were on 21 for none when rain brought the game to an end.

At Richmond School the 4ths were unable to even make a start in their game against Whitby 2nds. While at Cliffe the 5ths had a good win when 50 from Harrison Girot was the biggest contribution to  177 for 7.

Cliffe were dismissed for 95 with Vittal Raj taking five for 39, son Raam Raj two for naught and Eddie Player two for eight.

The 3rds had no game on Sunday and wet weather in the morning caused the postponement of the Deighton XI v Layfield XI charity match to be postponed to be arranged for a later date.