AFTER a much-celebrated opening day success Seaton Carew now face up to the ultimate challenge in the NYSD when they travel to take on champions Richmondshire.
The Dalesmen’s quest for a third consecutive title began in style last week when they became the first side to win the toss, decide to bat and then go on to gather the new maximum points return available in such cases.
That has already put them at the top of the pack and with home advantage against the newly-promoted Seaton they will be determined to build on that position.
One man the visitors won’t have to face is Shani Dissanayake. The Sri Lankanis not expected to arrive in the country in time for tomorrow’s match, so in that eventuality Richmond will go in with the same XI who won at Sedgefield, which means there is no place yet for Sam Wood who cracked a century and then claimed seven wickets for the second team last week.
Stokesley were the only other side to pick up the 25-point maximum, but they have to travel to Marton who are still smarting from a surprise home defeat at the hands of Guisborough.
With Will Brown unavailable Tom Kendrew is promoted to keep wicket and Mike Howe comes into the side in place of Simon Caulkwell. The hosts have not yet finalised their line-up.
So strong was the Barnard Castle performance at Hartlepool last week that first-class world record holder Aamer Sajjad didn’t get a bat, so he’ll be chomping at the bit when Darlington visit Vere Road tomorrow. The hosts are likely to be unchanged although Mike Dixon and Andy Heron, a new signing from Sheffield United, are added to the squad.
The Quakers will still be missing Bangladeshi Test player Rajin Saleh who doesn’t arrive in the country until May 1. Ben Wicling and Callum Lethbridge are called up.
Another club sweating on the arrival of their overseas man is Marske.
The Division One champions opened their Premier campaign with a solid draw at Feethams, and their hope is that Sri Lankan Nadeera Nawela arrives in time for the home game with Sedgefield, if not they will be unchanged.
Mark Davies aggravated a shoulder injury which prevented him from bowling on his debut, and he misses this weekend altogether, but Aussie amateur David Miller is expected to make his first appearance for Sedgefield.
In tomorrow’s other games Saltburn entertain a Great Ayton side that includes Chris Batchelor upon his return from holiday, Steve Hutchinson and Mitchell Brown are included in the Redcar team to entertain Hartlepool, and the Guisborough versus Middlesbrough match has been postponed to be played later in the season.