Rain returns but Harrogate pair set league record

hsb  Harrogate Cricket Club. Andy Hawkswell.    100605M2c.
hsb Harrogate Cricket Club. Andy Hawkswell. 100605M2c.

Saturday afternoon’s deluge put paid to Harrogate CC hopes of clinching victory over Sheffield United, but there was plenty for skipper Ryan Bradshaw to be happy about.

Despite his troops looking bang in trouble at 150-8, Andy Hawskwell and Ollie Driver then set a new Yorkshire League ninth-wicket record with a stand of 119.

The duo wiped away the previous record of 99, set by Barnsley pairing Brett Hunsley and Mark Broadhurst against Cleethorpes in 2002.

Hawskwell made 86 and Driver 45, as Harrogate reached 280 in 54.2 overs.

The game was then abandoned with Sheffield United at 88-3, Vic Craven having plundered 3-43.

“It was phenomenal,” said Bradshaw.

“We were in a really bad patch at 150-8 and hadn’t batted well at all, but those two came on and were superb.

“It set the game up nicely.

“Vic then got three wickets in his second spell, on a really flat wicket, and then the black clouds starting circling and there was no chance of finishing.”

Harrogate face a double test of their mettle this weekend, taking on the league’s top and bottom sides in York (home, Saturday) and Castleford (away, Monday).

Still without three key bowlers and also missing Driver this weekend, Bradshaw is likely to dip into the second team for resource.

“We haven’t beaten York for a while, but we have to go in and play positive cricket and take the game to then,” said Bradshaw.

“We’ll see what happens.

“Castleford meanwhile might be struggling but it’s dangerous to write them off.

“I don’t like saying we’ll beat the team that’s bottom of the league because they do have some very experienced players who sometimes turn out for them.

“David Wainwright, who sometimes plays for Derbyshire is a real threat and Andrew Bourke is another, and we might find ourselves up against both of them on Monday.

“We’ve got to try and play our best, and I think we’ve got enough firepower to see them off but we are stillmissing people through injury and I will have to draw one or two from the second team.”