Josh Bell celebrates best score with the bat

RISING talent Josh Bell went from celebration to pain during 48 hours of cricket for club and Dyke House Academy last week.


RISING talent Josh Bell went from celebration to pain during 48 hours of cricket for club and Dyke House Academy.

The 15-year-old hit his highest ever batting score when he reached 85 not out during an Academy defeat to the highly-rated Barnard Castle and was then left on crutches after sustaining an injury for Seaton Carew.

Bell has had someone help him around Dyke House carrying his bag since hobbling off after a collision in the field with a soft tissue injury against Maltby for Seaton’s Under-17s.

It was certainly not the ideal way to savour his fantastic achievement at the crease for Dyke House when they made the trip to one of the Surridge Sport Knockout County Cup favourites, Barnard Castle.

Bell, captaining Dyke House’s Under-15s, were given the tough task of facing Barnard Castle, and to make matters even more difficult the weather was poor with overcast conditions and drizzle.

Bell won the toss and chose to bat on a pitch with one very small boundary, opening the batting with Year 8’s Evan Newbegin.

The pair started well. After eight overs, Bell reached the milestone of 50 runs against a very strong bowling attack, with Newbegin supporting the captain with an excellent 35.

Newbegin lost his wicket, being stumped by the wicket keeper from the bowling of a Durham County spinner, who went on to take four wickets in total.

The rest of the Dyke House batting line-up failed to support Bell in batting, which slowed down his scoring, but he went on to hit three huge sixes over the bowlers’ head in the final over to finish on 85 not out.

Barnard Castle's opening batsman came out in the rain to chase a fantastic score of 138. Bell and Rhys Greig’s bowling to start was good, however the opener looked to punish any loose bowling and they did.

Bizarrely, off the bowling off Greig, the home team’s opener cut a powerful shot to Joe Snelson. His footballing background helped him get mixed up in which sport he was actually playing and he elected to field the ball with his foot, somehow popping the ball in the air for him to catch – to provide some hilarious viewing.

That was the only wicket Dyke House managed to take and after dropping the opening batsman four times, he went on to make a magnificent century, winning the game for his team in less than 13 overs.

Team coach Luke Richardson said: “The young Under-15s team was defeated by probably the strongest team in the competition but the team were certainly not disgraced.

“Due to the team being made up of predominantly younger players from years seven, eight and nine, they made a good account of themselves and would usually have won a game with such a score posted.”