Champions South Northumberland proved too strong for a determined Tynemouth side on Saturday at Preston Avenue.
A fine innings by Scotland international Calum Macleod and some high class seam bowling from Stephen Humble were highlights of a strong all round performance by the Bulls who once again look NEPL champions elect this season.
Visiting skipper, and former Tynemouth player, Adam Cragg won the toss and elected to bat on a flat looking pitch, which proved a fair test between bat and ball all day.
Former Aussie Ashes star Marcus North threatened briefly, starting with two fine boundaries, however, he was dismissed by Finn Lonnberg for just 11, caught by home skipper Debnam off a leading edge.
A steady partnership then developed between the ever consistent Simon Birtwhistle and the impressive Macleod, who started cautiously but throughout combined rock solid defence with some elegant drives.
His battle with home professional Tahir Khan was a game within a game and it was Macleod who came out on top, showing fine technique and an array of sweep shots against the man from Karachi.
Macleod’s innings of 78 came to an end when he was bowled by Andrew Smith, just reward for the home player, who toiled away manfully from the Golf Course end, returning fine figures of 3-52 from 15 consecutive overs.
Tynemouth’s bowling was determined but once again dropped catches cost the side dearly and handy contributions from Birtwhistle (29) and Cragg (31), and then a fine 41 from the excellent Rob Peyton, saw the away team declare on 213 for the lose of seven wickets.
Tynemouth’s reply started badly with Stephen Humble getting both openers cheaply before the in-form Matty Brown was joined by Khan and these two briefly threatened to bring the Seasiders back into the game.
Birtwhistle then showed his all-round skills by taking a brilliant one handed catch off Macleod to dismiss Brown for 29 and then getting the wicket of Khan himself, caught at short leg for 17.
With no chance of a win the home side fought hard for a draw, but fine bowling, terrific fielding and intelligent field placing showed the Tynemouth players and supporters what a fine side South North are.
The home side were eventually dismissed for 118, 95 runs short of their target.
Another loss has sent Ben Debnam’s men tumbling down the table and they will look to put things right against Benwell Hill on Saturday at Preston Avenue. The game starts at 12.30pm.
Meanwhile the second team did much better with two wins over the weekend.
Following an away win at South Northumberland they played at Stockton on Sunday in the NEPL Bowl Quarter-Final.
Tynemouth elected to field first and their hosts posted 225 all out.
Finn Lonnberg and James Carr each took three wickets after Sean Longstaff had struck before a run was scored.
Tynemouth had overs to spare in a five wickets win with opener Henry Malton scoring 31 and Matthew McDine an undefeated 86, partnered to the end by Longstaff who finished on 45 not out.
For their opponents, Robert Peregrine took the first three wickets for 29 off his nine overs.
The third team hosted Bomarsund and were asked to bat first.
Skipper Chris Grieveson and Geoff Simpson opened with an explosive start. They put on 179 for the first wicket before Simpson was caught for an impressive 106, which included 12 fours and seven huge sixes.
Grieveson was out for 96 with 12 fours and a six when a hook shot off a full delivery fell into the hands of deep square leg.
Tynemouth put on 276-4 with the fast maturing Hamish Swaddle-Scott hitting four fours and two sixes in his rapid 41, and Richie Hay provided the icing on the cake by hitting 12 not out from only eight deliveries.
Bomarsund made a brave attempt at their huge target with Mark Story caught by Mike McIntyre off Ed Snelders for 21 with the first wicket falling at 80.
Opener Alex Breeze went on to dominate the innings and make 125 with 11 fours and seven sixes before Hay caught him off the bowling of Tom Hamilton at the death.
Hay had impressed with his full opening spell of 0-38 off ten overs that meant the visitors were always behind the required rate.
Bomar made 206-5 with Snelders taking 2-27 off six overs thanks to a second catch by McIntyre, and Neil Bennett also bowling well with 2-27 off five overs.
This was a second decisive win in a row for Tynemouth who are starting to climb the NCL division two table.
Saturday: 1sts v Benwell Hill, home, 12.30pm , NEPL Premier Division. 2nds v Benwell Hill, away, 1pm, NEPL Division 2. 3rds v Embleton, home, 1pm, NCL Divivision 2.
Sunday: 1sts v Eppleton, away, 1.30pm, Banks Salver. Academy v South North, away, 1.30pm, NEPL Sunday Division 1.