Hartlepool CC lose to old foes Darlington

Hartlepool Cricket Club bowlet Mark Simmington in action at Park Drive.  Picture by Joe Spence
Hartlepool Cricket Club bowlet Mark Simmington in action at Park Drive. Picture by Joe Spence

A sun soaked Park Drive should have been the perfect setting for some high-scoring cricket – yet it was the bowlers who took most credit.

Top of the league Darlington batted first in front of a bumper crowd at the West Park venue.

Callum Prosser and Marc Symington, bowling at opposite ends to which they intended to, both put in strong displays, restricting the visitors in the early stages of the game.

Saleh was dismissed for 11, with a faint edge from the bowling of Prosser carrying to wicket keeper Craig Symington.

Prosser struck again, removing Ben Wicling for 14 as the Quakermen struggled to 38.

Liam Coates, a winter target for Pool showed the Stags exactly what they had missed out on, stroking the ball around the field.

He built partnerships with Dan Hodgson, Matty Brown and Doug Mulholland before eventually falling.

Coates knock of 74 from 85 balls was starting to take the game away from Pool.

However, the bowlers at the death did a great job to restrict them.

They were at one stage 134 for 3, but pegged them back to 174 for 7, with the innings ending on 204 for the loss of 7 wickets.

MailSport reported on Friday that restricting the visitors would be key to any success for the home side and Darlington will have been a little unhappy they did not push on more.

Pool knew they would find the going tough, as chasing a score in excess of 200 is never easy.

However, this chase was made all the more difficult by having the possibility of facing the league’s best bowler for 17 overs.

Indeed it was made even harder when Mulholland dismissed Neil Coverdale, closely followed by Jon Rickards succumbing to the legendary veteran John Barnes.

Pool found facing Barnes very tough, with scoring shots a rarity. It was almost just a case of survival.

The Symington brothers attempted a revival, however Craig was to become Barnes second victim for 27.

Marc Symington fell with the score on 87, and despite a knock of 20 from Jack Wilkinson, that was the only real highlight for Pool.

Barnes had strangled the scoring at the top of the innings and the Spin and guile of Peter Armstrong was almost enough to se Darlington home.

Pools innings finished on 135 for the loss of 9, finishing with 5 points from the encounter, as opposed to the 17 Darlington receive.

Darlington Innings

Saleh c Symington b Prosser 11, Wicling b Prosser 14, Coates c&b Symington, Hodgson c Rckrd b Harrison 8, Brown c&b Symington 21, Mulholland not out 32, Lethbridge st Symingtonb Symington14, Wheeler b Prosser 7, Barnes not out 16. Extras 9. Total for 7 wickets 204.

Prosser 3-60, Symington 3-66, Harison 1-23, Yuill 0-16, Mole 0-21, Rickard 0-11

Hartlepool Innings

Coverdale c Saleh b Mulholland 5, Rickard LBW Barnes 7, M.Symington st Hodgson b Armstrong 34, C.Symington LBW Barnes 27, Wilkinson c Saleh b Mulholland 20, Tebbett c Mulholland b Armstrong 6, Mitchell st Hodgson b Armstrong 1, Prosser c Mulholland b Armsrong 12, Harrison run out 11, Yuill not out 0, Extras 12. Total for 9 wickets 135.

Barnes 2-20, Mulholland 2-250, Brown 0-18, Armstrong 4-20