Hartlepool were somewhat unlucky this weekend, with their first team just missing out on victory, their second team losing from a winning position and their third team losing a high-scoring game.
First Team Go Close
The first team welcomed basement side Sedgefield to Park Drive hoping for a victory that would ease any lingering thoughts of relegation. Unfortunately it was not to be with both teams having to settle for the draw in the end.
Sedgefield batted first and made 204 for eight after being in some trouble early in their innings. In reply, ‘Pool looked as though they were on course for victory as James Johnston and Craig Symington compiled half-centuries but the loss of both set batsmen caused the innings to falter.
In the end, Alan Tebbett needed to hit the final ball for six to secure victory but unfortunately he could only find the man on the boundary and was run out attempting to secure a bonus point.
Second XI Snatch Defeat from Jaws of Victory
After last week’s first league win, the second team travelled to title-chasing local rivals Blackhall hoping to cause a major upset. A last-minute drop out from the first team robbed the seconds of their wicket-keeper but despite this setback, captain Rhoden had no hesitation of asking the home side to bat first.
Adil Ahmed made an immediate breakthrough with the 10th ball of his first over; producing a tremendous inswinger to dismiss the young opener. Adil mixed the unplayable with the unreachable, picking up a second wicket when home captain Wilkinson got a leading edge to gully.
With veteran Kev Peek bowling tightly at the other end, ‘Hall struggled to score. A good partnership between Mirza and Whitworth moved the score along but Peek finally got an LBW decision after a number of close shouts against Mirza.
This led to a collapse that saw ‘Hall six down for just over 100, and seven down for around 120.
Unfortunately ‘Pool could not apply the killer touch as Johann Lezema and Nas Feroz lauched a brutal counter-attack. Both batsmen found the boundary at will, combining to hit Smith’s last over for 27. The final total of 218 for eight was perhaps 30 runs more than they should have got.
In reply, ‘Pool lost Rhoden early before Liam Prosser and Dan Shurmer rebuilt with a fine partnership in which Prosser was at his destructive best, racing to a 40-ball half-century.
The loss of Shurmer and Cannon Jnr did little to stem the flow of runs and Prosser needed only a further 29 balls to reach his century. At drinks ‘Pool were 155 for four, needing only 64 from the remaining 25 overs.
Unfortunately the interruption broke the batsmens’ concentration with Rathbone & Prosser (105) falling in quick succession. After that Blackhall sensed blood and Lezema capped a fine all-round performance by cleaning up the tail as ‘Pool were dismissed for 191.
A much improved display will bring confidence before a crunch double weekend.
Thirds Lose High Scoring Game
The third team suffered a defeat at home to Darlington in a high-scoring game:
© Cricket World 2014