Jets Continue Strong Start to the Season

Jets Continue Strong Start to the Season
9 May 2022

A strong start to the season across the whole club continued through week three with all four senior sides again coming out on top. Anyone following the live scores on play-cricket will attest that it wasn't plain sailing but the various Jets sides dug in deep across the board and found ways to win with some great individual and team displays.

1stXI v Stockport

You would have got some long odds on a 1stXI win after the first hour of play at London Road on Saturday afternoon, never mind the eventual 83-run margin of victory. Visitors Stockport ran riot after winning the toss in helpful conditions with some excellent new-ball bowling - particularly from veteran Mike Eley (5-34) - which left the Jets reeling at 36-5. It was some tough cricket as, for the first time this season, the 1stXI were put under real pressure for a sustained period and had to take their medicine.

The home side showed their mettle though and knuckled down with Will Westerby helping to rebuild the innings by eating up 90 deliveries for a mature 35 that belied his years. It allowed Will Ritchie to play his natural game with a counter-attacking 45 (5x4, 0x6, 42b) at better than a run-a-ball as the pair added an invaluable 61 for the seventh wicket. This lifted the side to an eventual 141 all out which started off as something to bowl at and quickly began to look a very handy score as it was Stockport’s turn to suffer.

The Dukes ball was also doing plenty in the hands of messrs Carson (2-3) and Henderson (1-10) as a perfect start quickly removed both visiting captain Jatoi (1) and overseas player Fitton (0). North East then settled into the same rhythm of the opening weeks, but it was a role reversal for the spinners as Westerby (2-19) took a back seat to Dave Oldfield. The slow left-armer reeled off a metronomic spell of 5-11 from 9.5 overs to squeeze the life out of Stockport, deservedly taking the final wicket as a quicker ball cleaned up last man Porter with the scoreboard reading just 59.

Lindow v 2ndXI

The twos mirrored their 1stXI counterparts by defending a seemingly low total away at Lindow. The hosts’ outground proved to be a batting graveyard as only one player in both sides managed an individual score in excess of 14. Thankfully for the Jets, that was the returning Manusha Wettasinghe who marked his first appearance of the season by hitting an even 50 (4x4, 4x6, 48b) after coming in at eight in the order with the scoreboard reading a perilous 47-6. 

A final total of 114 was more than enough on a wicket offering lavish assistance to the bowlers, especially as skipper Dyson quickly turned to tweakers Jimmy Williams and Adam Burgess. The pair bowled their full allocations in tandem for combined figures of 20-10-29-8, Burgess taking the lion's share of the wickets with a superlative 6-17. It meant a successful Lindow chase was never in the offing, eventually succumbing for 68 which was only boosted by an innings-best partnership of 19 for the final wicket.

Bowdon Vale v 3rdXI

Another Saturday full-house was wrapped up by a much-changed 3rdXI who also followed the blueprint in the field with a slow-bowling five-for. Not only that, Owen Johnson (5-7) bowled all five of his victims to help engineer a collapse from 92-2 to 133 all out after Bowdon Vale elected to take first use. There was also a pleasing 2-23 from U13 Sam Westerby across two spells as he stepped up to take the new ball with the dependable Chris Taylor (1-19).

In reply the Jets had to navigate a tricky ten over spell from the experienced Nigel Halsall (2-3) who gave almost nothing away. John Westerby showed all of his class and experience to anchor the innings though, seeing off Halsall and scoring healthily against the rest of the Vale attack. The highlight was a towering 6 over extra cover as Westerby Snr completed a fine day for the family with an unbeaten 85* (10x4, 1x6, 95b), well supported by man of the match Johnson (23*) in an eight-wicket win.

4thXI v Grappenhall

The 4thXI seamlessly transferred their Twenty20 Cup form into the longer format as they opened their league season with a win over visiting Grappenhall. Matt Mullany will be lost to Saturday cricket for the rest of the school year but showed his value on Sundays by top-scoring with 61 (8x4, 0x6, 79b), adding 68 for the fourth wicket with brother Dan (35). All three Mullanys were run out in the latter stages looking for quick runs as Ed Parkinson topped up the score with a quickfire 24* to help the Jets set 173-6.

Jamie Bray (4-41) then looked to be setting the fours up for a quick finish with immediate top order scalps in response. Veteran Australian Ben Clissold had other ideas though, picking up the scoring pace and clearing the ropes with regularity to keep the visitors well in the game. Thankfully his innings was ended at a cameo 31 by Ed Parkinson (2-39), allowing the Jets to manage the game through to a positive conclusion and a 40-run margin of victory to continue to extend the club-wide winning streak.

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