STAFFORD PLACE’S grip at the top of Division One shows no sign of weakening, their latest victory coming last Saturday by a huge margin as they hammered relegation-threatened Hutton Rudby by 190 runs.
An opening stand of 156 between Gary Sexton (81 from 75 balls) and Carl Rutland (71 from 104 balls) well and truly set the scene, and though Matthew Brown (5- 42) stemmed the flow of runs Place still managed to post a formidable 222-7 from their 40 overs.
The second innings provided a marked contrast, with batsmen unable to cope with the searing pace of Bomber Smith (3-9) who blew away the top order and then stepped aside graciously to allow other bowlers to share in success, Lee Robson leading the charge with 3-8 as Rudby were reduced to 31 all out in 17.1 overs of mayhem.
Reigning champs East Harlsey showed they are no back number as they moved into second spot with a convincing victory over the 2012 champions Kildale. Dave Willey returned to top form with the bat, stroking a majestic 127 out of his sides 210 for 4, and hitting 15 fours and 4 sixes. This proved way too many for Kildale as Alex Walls maintained his fine form with the ball taking 5 for 36 to send them packing for just 86.
Moorsholm remained in the title hunt following their comfortable seven wicket victory over Kirby Sigston, Liam Crooks’ five wicket haul restricting Sigston to 159 for 6 before an unbroken fourth wicket partnership between Robbie Haw (60 not out) and Scott Pearson (52 not out) saw them home with tread to spare.
Scruton came unstuck against Great Broughton despite making a respectable 157-8. Broughton’s batting, however, gained them a valuable seven-wicket victory with Mark Lewis (88) and Ali Johnson (50 not out) seeing them home in style.
Trevor Mavin’s deadly burst of 5-9 in 6.4 overs completely undid Crathorne in their home game against Hartlepool Power, and they slumped to 101 all out after being 84-4 at one stage. Martin Lane (3-28) did his best to fight back but 33 from Mark Wright swung the game the Power’s way as they eased to a five wicket win.
In Division Two the New Marske title charge remained firmly on course as they thrashed one of their closest challengers, Thimbleby, by ten wickets. Jonathan Capps top scored with 41 but it was the bowling of Tim Broome, who took five for 23 from 17 accurate overs, that put Marske in command. Openers Gary Alderson (71 not out) and John Watson (57 not out) then put the Thimbleby attack to the sword as they raced to their target in just 22 overs, hitting 22 boundaries between them.