Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Northumberland Leagues

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Northumberland Leagues

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRIS WEST

LAST Sunday was like a dagger through the heart for people in Shotley Bridge - and it was nothing to do with England''s elimination from the World Cup.

The Bridge led the NTSL championship race all season and had every right to be confident going into their showdown with Swalwell - but the three-times champions turned on the style to ruthlessly dismantle the Bridge and take over at the top at the exact halfway point of the campaign.

But at least Shotley don''t have to simmer over the defeat for very long as they get the immediate chance of revenge this afternoon when the reverse fixture is played. Bridge have home advantage in this one and Lewis Hall and Stefan Dabrowski return to make them up to full strength, a state the visitors also enjoy.

It is hard to see the top two being challenged by anybody else at the moment - Morpeth are in a distant third place and have to face a derby match at Longhirst Hall today when Ashington are the visitors. The Colliers have deferred selection, but medium pacer Jonathan Sadler and batsman Ross Sample are both ruled out through injury. Injuries seem to be the theme of the day with several sides missing key personnel. Phil Shield is sidelined and misses Annfield Plain''s trip to Sacriston, although Martin Speight returns. The home side will have to do without the services of Ben Hall for about a month as he has split the webbing of his hand - Mattie Winn steps into the breach.

And in the lengthy queue in casualty Percy Main''s keeper Jon Lindley has a broken finger and is replaced by Barry Errington, with Simon Curtis, James Butler and Mayank Agarwal all returning for the home game against Chopwell. Bottom club Lintz could have double vision today as they search for their first win of the season. Visitors Leadgate have replaced bowler Gary Dixon on their teamsheet with another bowler - called Gary Dixon. Lintz show faith with last week''s line-up.

In the day''s other game, fourth-placed Lanchester entertain Tynedale. …

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