High Farndale are doomed to finish bottom of the Feversham League table but they at least gained consolation in achieving their first league victory – with a last-over success by four wickets against visitors Duncombe Park.
No fewer than 43 of Park’s 77 runs came from the Leckenby clan, 27 for run-machine Brian and 16 for Adam. Joe Sails contributed 14, but bowlers generally held sway, none more so than Mark Fairweather (4-16) and Richard Thompson (3-14).
Park hoped Farndale’s nerves would betray them as their batsmen set out to achieve elusive success. However, well as Adam Leckenby (2-13) and Joe Sails (2-26) bowled, High Farndale were not to be denied, and thanks mainly to Stuart Dowson (29) and P Dowsland (20), amid some tension, they won through with just two balls to spare.
Gillamoor still have four matches to play, but only a dramatic loss of form will prevent them from being crowned champions.
Visitors Spout House were their latest victims.
Dan Medd made a notable 29 for House, denying his brother Alec’s strenuous attempts to dismiss him in the process. Brian Hall (11) and Paul Donaldson (10) made it into double figures, but the total of 73-8 from 18 overs was not helped by three run-outs, or by the bowling of Adam Durrant, who ended with 2-11, and Matt Durrant, who bagged 2-0 off two overs.
Gillamoor openers Ian Smith (28) and John Lumley (21) quickly put the result beyond doubt and Tom Munday (12) quickened the process towards Gills gaining a seven-wicket success after only 12 overs. Barry Wheldon’s athletic fielding and Brian Hall’s 2-33 were bright spots for Spout House.
The following evening, Gillamoor entertained Burythorpe in the Countess of Feversham Cup.
Burythorpe elected to bat but saw M Woodliffe dismissed in the first over by Adam Durrant without scoring. They recovered from this setback to some degree, finishing on 74-7 in 18 overs, with J Bolam making 25 and M Beckett 18. Nick Thornicroft took 2-12 and Matt Durrant 2-16.
Losing Thornicroft and Lumley early in Gillamoor’s reply did not deter Will Watson, nor did the rain.
He smashed a six in the first over before eventually falling for 22. Matt Durrant made a quick 13, before the ever-reliable Mark Haines (24 not out) guided Gillamoor to a five-wicket victory in the 16th over. Dave Craven bagged 4-2 in his five overs.
In the other semi-final, spectators at Duncombe Park witnessed an enjoyable encounter against Slingsby with plenty of runs scored.
Park’s Jack Cranage’s attacking policy means he rarely spends too long at the crease. On this occasion he made the most of being promoted to number three by smashing 60 entertaining runs. Connor Campbell (43) and Peter Humpleby (26) kept the scoreboard ticking to the extent that Park reached a daunting 171-4.
Ben Corner (2-17) had the satisfaction of dismissing Park’s captain Brian Leckenby for the second time this season.
Victory was not a mere formality for Park as Slingsby openers Andy Frank (38) and Tom Harrison (33) put on 62 in just seven overs.
But Peter Kent (3-35) put the brakes on and, although there was a valiant undefeated 42 from M Fraser, Slingsby were restricted to 146-5.