Press Release 19 September 2016

This week saw the eagerly-awaited return of the Northumberland League winter season. In the Premier division, Byker A were unable to field a full-strength team leading to a 10-0 loss against St Chads. The Mount A were too strong for Old England with Graeme Barella, still recovering from a knee injury which kept him away from the summer league, not dropping an end as they won 10-0. Kevin Wilson was the star of the show against new team Mitford A when he won all 3 and the doubles with Gareth Pearson but unfortunately the Cramlington Stingers couldn’t field a full team and they lost 6-4.

Division 1 was host to a raft of tight games which could have gone either way. Cramlington Reivers drew against Riding Mill and Newton A drew against Mitford B whilst The Mount B and Matfen Centurions beat The Mount C and Byker B 6-4 respectively. Allan Thompson for the Mill, Caron Guthrie for Mount C and John Russell for Newton all received Player of the Match awards as they picked up 3 wins each for their teams.

Matfen Senators, led by Alex Holliday, clearly showed their intent to win Division 2 as they beat Birtley 9-1, only losing the doubles. Byker C got a walkover as Old England Crocks were unable to field a team but the Old England Fatts drew 5-5 against Cramlington Trojans.

No less than four Cramlington teams played in Division 4 this week as the Knights beat in-house rivals Magpies, the Falcons lost 9-1 to Newton C and the Dragons lost 8-2 to Brandon Bravehearts, who surely win the award for best-named team this year. Ryan Morton was the Player of the Match in that affair, winning his hat-trick of games.

The first round of the Veterans British League is to be played this weekend. The picture below shows Geoff Salter (red shirt), one of the Northumberland League players who will be involved.


Press Release 23 August 2016

This week’s matches saw the Cramlington Stingers clinch the Northumbria Summer league title with a resounding 9-1 win away at Byker on Thursday evening. Dale Aitkenhead, Iain Wood and Adam Webster turning out for the Stingers and only Steve Dickinson of the home side winning against Iain Wood in three straight games saved the whitewash. Dean Eadington and Bob Sanderson being the other two for Byker. The Stingers who were last year’s champions only needed one point from this match to overhaul the Kimblesworth Rockets who in their first season pushed the Stingers all the way. Byker finishing bottom of the division are relegated with the Chinese Community team who have suffered as always in the summer with their top student players returning home for the holidays.

In division two the Sacriston Aces won their last match against Backspin 8-2 but this was not enough to save them from relegation for the second season in a row having dropped down from Division one last year. Ian Mcallister winning 3 supported by Duncan Fraser and Jon Mawson who both won 2. Only Jamie Dent winning the two for Backspin.

In Division 4 Matfen C kept their hopes of avoiding relegation alive by winning 7-3 at home to mid table Ouston B. Keith Hodges and Richard Rayfield getting maximums for the home side and 1 from Andrew Potter giving them the points. They now need another 7-3 win in their last match against Whitley Chapel to be safe.

Some more sad news again this week when we heard of the passing of Joe Tron who had been associated with Ouston TTC for 45 years and held many roles in this club as well as supporting the Northumbria League.

Dale Aitkenhead

Dale Aitkenhead -

Press Release 15 August 2016

The final week of fixtures in the regular summer season sees some critical matches being played to determine who will be champions of all divisions and of course relegation too.

In the first division the Cramlington Stingers needing 10 points from their last two re arranged matches won 9-1 against the North East Chinese Association leaving them only requiring one point from this last match to clinch the title. However the Kimblesworth Rockets in second place played a day later and won 10-0 against Mount A keeping their slim title chances alive. The Stingers only needing a point from their last match away at Byker.

In the very closely contested Div 3 the leaders Brandon anacondas lost 4-6 away at Cramlington Cobras and relinquished that lead to Byker in their very last match winning 10-0 against Backspin B to win the Division by just 4 points.

In Division 2 the Casuals are favourites despite having lost 4-6 against Ouston A this week, Dave Pringle getting man of the match in winning his 3 supported by Neil and Mark Rodgers with 1 each. The Casuals lead second placed Old England by 7 points and both teams have one match left.

In Div 4 Brandon Bees won against the Lions 9-1 with Brian Childs and Jack Jacomb both getting maximums and Jordan Dove two to win the division before Cram Corinthians had the chance to play  Matfen C which confirmed them as runners up winning  6-4

Division 5 has already been won by the Cram Jaguars before their last match against NESLC which they won 8-2 and Brandon devils had already clinched 2nd spot before their re arranged match vs NESLC next week.

I finish with some sad news this week as we learnt of the passing of Joe Tron, long time Northumbria player and Club secretary from Ouston.

Press Release 9 August 2016

The match between summer league contenders Kimblesworth Rockets and St Chads saw any hope the Rockets had of wrestling the title away from last years winners Cramlington Stingers evaporate when they were defeated 7-3. The Rockets coach Dave Godbold again easily winning his three being the only bright spot of the evening. Chads players Keith Weatherby, Jimmy Scope and Paul Baines all winning 2 each and also the doubles. St Chads now having completed their summer program sit top but with 2 games in hand over them and one in hand vs the Rockets and only needing 10 points the Stingers looks odds on the win the Summer league.

Division 3 leaders Brandon Anancondas played second placed Byker TTC and lost 6-4 with Steve Dickinson getting 3 supported by Chas Robertson 2 and Dave Craddock 1. The Anacondas missing regular player Simon Knopf who was substituted by Tony Taylor. This now means that the divisional winner will be decided in the last week of matches as only 2 points separate the two teams. Byker play bottom placed Backspin who are already relegated and the Anacondas play mid table Cramlington Cobras.

Brandon Bees kept up the pressure at the top of Division 4 with a 7-3 win away at Cramlington Magpies and with only a home match remaining vs Cramlington Lions look set to win the division as they are currently 6 points clear of closest rivals Cramlington Corinthians who won 6-4 against Ouston B this week to keep any title hopes alive. However its a tall order as they have a home match left against Matfen C who are looking to avoid relegation and in recent weeks have been fielding a much stronger team.

Entries closed on Monday for the forthcoming winter league and there are 51 teams entered across 5 divisions which is slightly down on last season.

Steve Dickinson

Steve Dickinson

Press Release 2 August 2016

Despite a hat-trick in division 2 from Rodney Roberts, Mount B were unable to fend off Ouston A with Wilkinson and Pringle taking 2 wins and the doubles for the visitors, Rodgers chipping in another to take the match 6-4. David Mcallister also won 3 and Player of the Match as his side Backspin A beat Sacriston Aces 7-3.
One of few highlights for Sacriston Comets against Byker B was when Colin Pritchard managed to beat the experienced David Craddock. Unfortunately in the end it made little difference as Byker won this division 3 match 9-1. It was the same result for Matfen B as Tree, Henderson and Perrin beat Backspin B’s Butler, Iwin and Beacham with only Perrin dropping a game to Butler. Brandon Anacondas picked up two 6-4 wins against Cramlington teams this week, beating both the Trojans and the Cobras. Jamie Lupton was the star of both shows having won 6 out of 6.
Division 4 was host to two inter-club whitewashes when Brandon Bees beat Brandon Crocodiles 10-0 and the experienced Cramlington Corinthians team beat the younger, up-and-coming Cramlington Lions 10-0. Ryan Morton took Player of the Match for the Bees and Pauline Long for the Corinthians. Ouston B and Matfen C had a closer game but David Nichols’ hat-trick alongside two wins from Harris and Robson was too good for Matfen as the away team lost 7-3.
In Division 5, NESLC were only able to turn out 2 players so they did well to keep in a tight match against Cramlington Knights. Duff and Thomas both picked up 2 wins but the Knights’ youngster Matthew Mastaglio proved too good on the night as he went home with 2 wins. Brandon Energy drew 5-5 with Cramlington Falcons and Brandon Devils beat Sacriston Eagles 8-2.

Press Release 16 July 2016

Cramlington Stingers played twice this week in the top flight, beating both Kimblesworth Rockets and St Chads 6-4. Andrew Wilkinson was the star of both shows as he picked up hat-tricks in both games against tough opposition. Godbold and Duffin both beat Penman and Webster to pick up 2 for the Rockets and Josh Weatherby won 2 comfortably for St Chads. At the other end of the table, Riding Mill beat NECA 7-3. NECA’s star player Chun Yin Yu was absent but Yao Li still picked up 3 for the away team.

Webster and Boyce both won hat-tricks against Backspin TTC A as Cramlington Casuals won 9-1 to maintain their position as firm favourites to win division 2. Jake Helm won his 3 and Player of the Match away to Ouston A and Alan Livingstone did the same for Mount TTC B as they beat Matfen A 7-3.

Backspin TTC B played twice in division 3 this week, both losses against Cramlington teams. At home they lost 8-2 to the Cobras with Lynsey Storey getting her hat-trick and away they lost 7-3 with Paul Fairlamb getting his. Byker TTC B saw a fairly comfortable win against Matfen B with Robertson and Patterson both taking 3 wins, Craddock losing against Robert Carr.

Carr also played for Matfen C in what must be a late attempt to keep the team in division 4 when they fielded a very strong team to beat divisional leaders Brandon Bees 10-0. It will be almost impossible for Brandon Crocodiles to stay in the division now after Whitley Chapel beat them 9-1 which means they’re 23 points away from 7th place Matfen C who also have 2 games in hand.

In division 5, NESLC lost 6-4 twice, once against Brandon Devils and once against Cramlington Falcons.

Andrew Wilkinson


Press Release 19 July 2016

The three top teams in contention for the summer league title all recorded big wins this week. Cramlington Stingers winning 10-0 against Riding mill, Kimblesworth Rockets winning 10-0 against The North East Chinese Association and St Chads winning 8-2 against Byker A. The Stingers have a big week ahead with a re arranged match vs. The rockets on Tuesday and a scheduled fixture against St Chads the day after which could be the defining week of their season.

Division 2 leaders Cramlington Casuals took on second placed Old England and the result was a draw with Adam Webster being man of the match winning all 3 of his sets and supported by Alex Hinchcliffe with 1 and also winning the doubles with Hinchcliffe. Old England winning 5 with 2 for Jake Helm and Barry Hill and 1 for Alan Atkinson. Other results from this division being a draw for Backspin a vs Ouston A and Sacriston Aces winning 6-4 against Matfen A.

In Division 3 Leaders Brandon Anacondas had a bye this week and that gave Byker B in second place the opportunity to make up some ground which they duly did in winning 6-4 vs Cramlngton Cobras. This puts them in second place by 2 points with a game in hand on Brandon which leaves the division finely poised with  matches left to play

Runaway leaders of division 5 Cramlington Jaguars won 8-2 away at Brandon Devils ith Joe Swinburn winning 3 supported by Steve Round with 3 and Ray Hately 1. Swinburn and Round winning the doubles too. Second placed NESLC, away at Brandon, managed to win 6-4 in a closely contested match which saw Pat Thomas taking 3 along with Terry Duff 2 and the doubles.

In Division 3 Leaders Brandon Anacondas had a bye this week and that gave Byker B in second place the opportunity to make up some ground which they duly did in winning 6-4 vs Cramlngton Cobras. This puts them in second place by 2 points with a game in hand on Brandon which leaves the division finely poised with  matches left to play

Adam Webster

Adam Webster (2)

Press Release 11 July 2016

The AGM of the Northumbria League took place last week and after 8 years as Chairman Aubrey stepped down to allow a younger person to steer the association on the next part of its journey. Gareth Pearson who plays for the same club as Aubrey was unanimously voted in as the new chairman. Aubrey Drapkin was then voted in as the new President to take the vacant slot that had been left after the passing of Ray Lydall last year.

In the League this week only 2 of the top four teams were in action and St Chads beat The Mount 6-4 and had both of the Wetherby’s in their side as usual for the home fixture. Both Keith and son Joshua were unbeaten and The mount players all won against Barry Cuthbertson plus the doubles for their four. A bottom of the table clash saw Riding Mill win 7-3 against Byker

The team looking likely to win division 2, Cramlington Casuals extended their lead by winning 7-3 in a rearranged match at home to Ouston A. Michael Boyce who is now working back in the area strengthening the Casuals and winning two along with Gareth Pearson and up and coming star Adam Webster getting 3. Dave Pringle from Ouston winning two and combining with Mark Rodgers to win the doubles. In their scheduled match the Casuals played Sacristion Aces who at the start of the season were tipped to win the division. Adam Webster this time supported by Alex Hinchcliffe and Paul Jamieson winning 8-2 against Duncan Fraser, Ian Mcallister and Jon Mawson leaving them second bottom of the division at the moment which is quite a surprise. Old England the second placed team won comfortably in their match against Matfen A 7-3 with Jake Helm winning all his sets, with Alan Atkinson getting 2 and new player Barry hill getting 1.

Leaders of Division 3 Brandon Anacondas getting 8 points against Matfen B in their home match this week with Jamie Lupton getting man of the match in winning all his games and Simon Knopf and tony Taylor getting 2 each as well as the doubles.

Aubrey Drapkin


Press Release 6 July 2016

The closest game in Division 1 this week saw St Chads travelling to Cramlington to face a Stingers lineup of Steven Penman, Dale Aitkenhead and Iain Wood. Penman took Player of the Match when he clinched a 5-ender against Baines to win his hat-trick, Aitkenhead won 2 and Wood took 1 to give the Stingers a 6-4 win. Kimblesworth Rockets and Mount TTC A both had big wins as the Rockets beat Byker 9-1, only losing the doubles, and Mount beat Riding Mill 10-0 which probably wasn’t a fair reflection on the closeness of the individual games.

Division 2 on the other hand offered 3 high quality, close matches. Matfen A drew 5-5 with Cramlington Casuals as Alex Holliday won 3 and Player of the Match. Webster and Pearson won 2 each for Cramlington, plus the doubles, but Philip Smith who was playing up from Division 4 wasn’t able to steal any wins. Backspin drew 5-5 with Old England, despite only being able to field 2 players. David Mcallister took Player of the Match by winning his 3, Helm and Atkinson taking 2 each for the visitors. David Pringle also won his 3 for Ouston A as they beat Sacriston Aces 6-4.

In Division 3, Brandon Anacondas beat Backspin B 9-1, Matfen B beat Cramlington Cobras 8-2 and Cramlington Trojans  beat Sacriston Comets 7-3.

Division 4 entertained 4 matches this week. Ouston B lost 8-2 to Brandon Bees as Childs and Tinkler both won hat-tricks. Philip Smith won 2 in his usual division which helped Cramlington Magpies draw 5-5 away from home against Matfen C, Rayfield taking Player of the Match with 3 wins for the home team. Cramlington Lions beat Brandon Crocodiles 9-1 and every player won 2 matches for Cramlington Corinthians as they won 7-3 against Whitley Chapel.

Press Release 29 June 2016

Kimblesworth Rockets have jumped to the top of the Northumbria Summer League’s standings this week after a 9-1 win against Mount TTC A. Veteran legend David Godbold and up-and-comer Max Duffin both won hat-tricks. Wraight managed to pull 1 back for Mount in a tight contest against Peter Smallcombe and was unlucky not to do better in the final end against Godbold. Unfortunately he was then out of his depth against Duffin as the defender found himself unable to compete with the youngster’s power and speed. Riding Mill travelled to St Chads only to find themselves at the wrong end of a 7-3 result. O’Connor did well to beat Baines and Cuthbertson but Keith Weatherby was too good and took Player of the Game.

Sacriston Aces could only field 2 players against Mount TTC B this week in Division 2 and new signing David Cutler took Player of the Game for the latter as they won 7-3. Matfen A’s Alex Holliday had an excellent match as he won a hat-trick against Backspin TTC A. Matfen won 6-4 overall with Backspin’s Mcallister and Dent winning 2 each.

Brandon Bees are still storming Division 4 and this week they swept all before them as they beat Cramlington Lions 10-0. Youngsters Hastings, Kanakala and Sowerby couldn’t compete with the Bees’ experience and prowess, Stephen Pattison taking Player of the Match for the Bees with fewest ends lost.

Experienced player Joseph Swinburn found himself helping out in Division 5 this week and proved that he’s probably a bit too good for it as he effortlessly strolled to his hat-trick despite a minor hiccup in his first end against Terry Duff. Duff and Thomas took 1 end each plus Duff and Linsley winning the doubles but the Cramlington Jaguars were too good overall, winning 7-3.

Peter Smallcombe with Aubrey Drapkin, League Chairman 


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