Skipper hails best Gate attack

hsb   Graeme Whiles bowling for Harrogate against Driffield.  (130427M4a)
hsb Graeme Whiles bowling for Harrogate against Driffield. (130427M4a)

Harrogate CC captain Ryan Bradshaw reckons he has the strongest bowling attack he has ever had at his disposal.

‘Gate secured a comfortable four-wicket victory at Appleby Frodingham on Saturday.

But Monday’s clash with Yorkshire Academy was postponed due to a Yorkshire Ladies match being played at St George’s Road, only for that to be later called off.

Cleethorpes visit Harrogate next Saturday before ‘Gate welcome Chester-le-Street on Sunday in the National Club Cup.

Bradshaw’s bowlers rattled through Frodingham’s top order on Saturday after the skipper won the toss and sent the home side in.

Young seamer Ashley Griffin took an impressive five wicket haul and Ben Biker also collected three for 54.

But a century stand for the home side’s ninth wicket frustrated ‘Gate and helped them post a respectable 221 all out.

Australian Calum How scored another half-century opening the batting to put the run chase well on track before fellow new recruit George Nash’s 79 brought the victory home.

Bradshaw lavished heavy praise on young seamer Griffin after his rise up from the club’s second string.

He said: “Ashley’s been superb. He’s a young lad and I said to him he was going to have a decent run of a month or so and he’s getting better each game.

“I’m really proud of him. We will keep him in. You can’t drop someone who has taken a five-for.

“There is good competition for places at the moment and it gives us options.

“It’s the best bowling attack we have had since I have been at Harrogate. But we have to make sure everyone is utilised. “

The captain admitted the century stand between Tom Brookrd (40) and Carl Taylor (56) was frustrating but his side came through well.

He said: “To be fair to the players they batted really well. The higher the standard you go up the more likely the tail will get scores. They put them back into the match.”

Spinner Andy Laws missed Saturday’s match with an injury but could return for the weekend clashes if he passes a fitness test

Bradshaw expects Cleethorpes to pose a tough test at the weekend. But he said he would give youth a go in the cup clash against Durham-based Chester-le-Street.

“Cleethorpes will be strong. They’re always good,” he said.

“Their South African overseas, Greg Hulme, is a first class cricketer and they have many experienced club players.

“We played Chester-le-Street three or four years ago and they’ve won the competition before too. They will still have a few players who were involved then.

“For the squad players to come up against a real tough side is only good.”

Harrogate 2nds also earned a thrilling win on Saturday as they chased down 236 against Heworth in York Senior League Division One.

Heworth’s David Simpson thwarted the ‘Gate attack when he made 142 in his side’s 235-7. But Rob Stanworth (76) and Will Bates (70) lead the chase before Ollie Driver saw the victory through with an unbeaten 32.