Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

David Leads Lads to the Top Flight

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

David Leads Lads to the Top Flight

Article excerpt

Byline: ANDREW WILKINSON

DAVID Weighell will play top flight cricket for the first time next season - 30 years after hitting his first runs for Stokesley.

Victory in the final game of the campaign earned the club a place in the Darlington Building Society NYSD Premier Division, and David said: "This is the finest moment. We won the division twice in the 80s but this time we are promoted. Winning the Haith and Fifteens Cups has made it a great year.

"I will play next year because it has always been my dream to play in the Premier Division with Stokesley. I don't really know what to expect because I haven't seen much Premier Division cricket. I have always been playing in our games, so have only faced the best bowlers when we have played top sides in the cups."

He deserves the chance to test himself against the best, having served Stokesley so well. And it's a family thing for his three sons Andrew, Jonny and James also play for the club.

David has opened the batting with Andrew and in the last three games the duo have batted through, including setting a club record 257 opening partnership in the win over Normanby Hall.

Most of the runs have been scored by aggressive batsman Andrew, but David has played his part, though he didn't expect to be opening as he explained: "At the start of the season the club decided that we would give young players a chance, so I dropped down to number six or seven.

"Then with three weeks of the season to go our opening bat Nick Bayliss was injured, so rather than shuffle the whole batting line-up, I went to opener.

"It was fantastic to open with Andrew. The two of us have started and finished in the last three games, so we have not lost a wicket."

It was a neck and neck battle to beat Barnard Castle to the only promotion place, and David admitted: "Because it was so close we haven't looked ahead. Now we have to. We will look for a professional and prepare for life in the higher division. The most important thing is to survive the first season, get used to it, and kick on. …

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