‘Frustrated’ Harrogate CC captain Ryan Bradshaw could be without three front-line bowlers for his side’s crunch clash at York on Saturday.
‘Gate moved alongside York at the top of the Yorkshire League on Saturday despite failing to wrap up victory over Sheffield United last weekend.
Graham Whiles celebrated a hat-trick but ‘Gate’s attack were left disappointed after United’s final pair batted out six overs to draw the match.
However, national club champions York surprisingly slipped to a two-run defeat at Driffield Town to draw ‘Gate level on points with a game in hand.
Bradshaw admitted York’s loss had softened Saturday’s blow but ahead of their clash this weekend he was “angry” at having a depleted outfit.
Spinners Andy Laws and George Ross have both been selected to represent university on Saturday and Ollie Driver is unavailable.
“Our task of beating the national champions has just got a little harder,” Bradshaw said.
“They will be producing a track that will spin. Not having two spinners will be interesting so we might have to go with our seam options.
“It is frustrating our best side isn’t going to go against their best side.”
Calum How top-scored with 53 against United but the Harrogate batsmen too often failed to convert starts into monster scores.
Bradshaw chipped in with a valuable 44 not out to help his side reach 236-6 from their 55 overs.
The Sheffield side looked well on their way to surpassing it at 146-4 but seamer Whiles (5-33) turned the match with an inspirational spell.
The bowler first trapped dangerman Helgard Prinsloo LBW before bowling Shaun Johnson and Chamin Weerasinghe for first ball ducks.
But United tailender Jack Roberts held firm for 26 balls to deny ‘Gate maximum points.
“Until the hat-trick the game was in the balance,” said skipper Bradshaw.
“It was one of the best spells you could see at Harrogate. He was bowling quickly and bowling big inswingers to the right handers.
“It completely ended their thoughts of winning the game. They dug in and at Harrogate the wicket is that good it is quite easy.”
Harrogate are hosting a triangular Twenty20 day on Sunday. York and Scarborough are both visiting with Harrogate due to play York at 10am in the first match.