Newton Aycliffe Cricket Club’s 1st team, sponsored by Franks the Flooring Store, began the new cricket season with a heavy nine wicket defeat away at a much strengthened Blackhall 1st XI in the NYSD 2nd division. After losing the toss, Aycliffe batted first and were dismissed for just 127 after 43.5 overs. Jack Slatcher (sponsored by Dean and Tina Greaves) batted with steely determination to top score with a patient 32 from 99 balls faced and he was supported well by Matty Greaves (24 runs), Joe Haines (18 runs) and James Layfield-Carroll (16 not out).
In reply, Blackhall coasted to their victory target, scoring 131 after only 24.3 overs with George Slatcher (1 for 35) taking the only homeside wicket to fall.
The second team also played their first match of the new season at home to Billingham Synthonia 2nds and used the opportunity to field seven junior players in their side and they did superbly well to come away with a hard fought draw in their NYSD 4th division clash.
The visitors were asked to bat first and racked up an imposing 199 for 8 from their allotted 40 overs. New Aycliffe captain Joe Teasdale led the attack, taking 4 for 59 and was supported well by 15 year old Leo Mercy (2 for 31) and 13 year old Harrison Pearson (1 for 19).
In reply, Aycliffe got off to a poor start and were struggling at 20 for 3 despite 16 runs from opener Joe Teasdale. Sean Morgan (sponsored by Unison) and vice captain Dan Weldon steadied the innings with a decent partnership of 42 before Weldon was dismissed for 15 runs. 14 year old Thomas Dearden then joined Morgan at the crease and the pair batted superbly, adding 64 runs for the 5th wicket before the youngster was bowled for a career best senior score of 21. Morgan was eventually dismissed for a career best score of 71 from 102 balls and his match saving innings contained ten boundaries. Leo Mercy (17 not out from 13 balls) and Harrison Pearson (0 not out off 11 balls) safely saw off the visitors attack in a tense finale as the Aycliffe youngsters held out for a morale boosting draw with the score at stumps on 152 for 8 from 40 overs.