Shields eyes Whitburn win to keep up pressure at the summit
Whitburn are looking to push themselves back into the Dukes ECB NEPL Premier Division title reckoning when they entertain Sacriston tomorrow.
Skipper Paul Shields said: “Ross Carty is injured, so he is replaced by Brydon Carse, who is back from injury.
“Sacriston managed to win last Saturday, so they crept up the table, whereas most others had their matches abandoned, so there is an urgent need to win this one, to establish our position.
“This won’t be easy, as Sacriston are improving their form.”
Sacriston have a few changes to make from that win last week, as official Iain Bestford suggested: “Changes will have to be made even after last week’s welcome win.
“Jonny Bushnell is now required for his school fixtures for a couple of weeks, so is unavailable.
“However, better news is that James Thompson is back. Callum Appleby may well be out for some time with an Achilles problem, having aggravated it during a T20 fixture last Friday.”
“Whitburn are a good yardstick for us, as they are always there or thereabouts when the league shake up is in full swing, near the end.
“Beating them would be a sign of our team’s improvement.”
Boldon take on Blaydon with both teams eager to get more points on the board to push themselves away from the bottom two places in the First Division.
Official Peter Crane said: “Gary Scott and Ian Pattison have both been injured for several weeks, but there is optimism they will be return to the fold for this week’s match.
“Barry McCarthy may well be available if he has no Durham commitments, but that will be decided towards the end of the week.
“Oliver Sampson –Barnes may well get his chance to move up from the second team.”
Burnmoor travel to bottom club South Shields and skipper Alec Linsley has a few players absent, he said: “We are missing both Mark Symington and Craig Stephenson.
“However, the side welcomes back Paul Craig.
“Gareth Harte should be able to play, but that is not certain as yet, as Durham have yet to decide their squads.”
It’s a double-header weekend in the Readers Durham Cricket League and Marsden travel to Durham City tomorrow and then take on Esh Winning in Division One.
Marsden official Paul Snaith said: “Our major concern is captain Chris Mann, who has a badly bruised wrist, while seam bowler Manav Seth misses out with a broken finger.
“The experienced Paul Cook takes his place on Saturday, providing more variety to the bowling attack.
“14-year-old Matthew Hughes keeps his place after making his first-team debut in the win over Bill Quay last weekend, looking to build on some excellent performances for the second team.”
“On Sunday, Paul Hobson returns in place of Cook, while Adam Sneller replaces Colin Mann.
“We are obviously delighted with our start to season, but we now face two tough games with Durham City and Esh Winning, who will be in the promotion mix come September.”
Boldon CA welcome Division Two league leaders Ryhope tomorrow.