On a beautiful Gosforth Saturday morning, it seemed a shame that the Stan Calvert Cricket match would be an indoor affair. The sun was shining and there was barely a cloud in the sky. Granted, the usual Newcastle cold was out in force, but it was nothing that a stylish cable knit jumper couldn’t deal with.
Inside the Newcastle Cricket Centre at South North CC, Newcastle won the toss and elected to bowl. Captain Will Briggs clearly hoped to take advantage of the pace and bounce of the artificial surface. Northumbria’s openers, Smith and Trevaskis, started well and scored 24 from the first two overs. However, this strong start was halted with the first ball of the third over as paceman Josh Cutts took a fine catch from his own bowling to dismiss Trevaskis for 7.
After the wicket fell, Northumbria struggled to maintain a partnership. Their number three batsman, Ben Ringrose took the wicket of Dinning for 11 after some superb glovework from Shreenivas Sarma before Will Briggs clean bowled McGee for a duck. Briggs was the pick of the bowlers. He came back from an expensive first over to finish with very impressive figures of 1-13 from his three overs. However, all of Newcastle’s bowlers performed well, especially towards the death - only fifteen runs came from the last three overs as Northumbria were restricted to a modest total of 80 from their ten.
Set a target of 81 to win, Newcastle started well. Openers Will Caldwell and Ben Ringrose shared a partnership of 34 before the former departed for 18. Ringrose kept timing the ball beautifully and hit the mandatory retirement score of 25 with ease. Briggs hit a useful 13 before being stumped, which left Newcastle at 68/2, with victory in sight.
Matthew Smith and Sarma knocked it around nicely to take Newcastle ever closer to the target. From the first ball of the ninth over, Smith cracked a 6 to take Newcastle over the line and win by four wickets.
Newcastle reclaim the cricket bragging rights after a dominant victory in a very enjoyable game. Despite missing several first-choice bowlers, Newcastle’s attack was excellent. Economic spells from Briggs and Ringrose made scoring difficult for Northumbria’s batsmen. They claimed regular wickets and kept the target down to 81, which was achieved with ease.