NICK SUMPTON’S COLUMN - Skippers lead by example

England captain Andrew Strauss celebrates with Kevin Pietersen after scoring a century during the Investec International Test Match at Lords Cricket Ground, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday May 18, 2012. See PA Story CRICKET England. Photo credit should read: Nick Potts/PA Wire. Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only. No commercial use. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information.

England captain Andrew Strauss celebrates with Kevin Pietersen after scoring a century during the Investec International Test Match at Lords Cricket Ground, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday May 18, 2012. See PA Story CRICKET England. Photo credit should read: Nick Potts/PA Wire. Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only. No commercial use. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information.

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It was a week of captains making match- winning scores both locally and on the international stage as Andrew Simpson’s 88 guided our 1st XI to the next round of the Yorkshire League Knockout, while Andrew Strauss hit 122 against the West Indies at Lords.

However, unlike our captain, Strauss has come under a lot of pressure after not making a 100 for well over a year.

People in some sections of the media have been calling for his head at the top of the order and therefore to relinquish his captaincy.

Although he hasn’t been setting the world on fire with the bat, he hasn’t been averaging 10 or anything like that.

It was good to see him come back in the first game of the season and put a score on the board which will hopefully make this talk of dropping him go away for the summer. A few times he has got into the 30s or 40s and come unstuck.

Everyone goes through a lean patch at any level and Strauss is no different. Imagine if we’d have dropped Cook for the Ashes series in Australia in 2011 after his poor summer in England, he went on to score over 700 runs in five Test matches.

With rain claiming another victim on Saturday, the first XI were restricted to cup action on Sunday.

The washout on Saturday meant Doncaster Town didn’t visit North Marine Road and the 1st XI made the trip to Appleby Frodingham for the first round of the Yorkshire League Knockout, a competition that we lost out in the final of last season.

Simpson made 88 as we posted 208 in the first innings, with Samrat Sharma also chipping in with 45. That proved to be too many for Appleby Frodingham who were boweld out for 78.

Danny Evans and Tom Bruce took three wickets apiece to put us into the next round, a competition we hope to go one better in this time around.

Tom Bruce’s impressive performances in the 1st XI cup games, have meant he keeps him place this weekend in place of Ant Hunter.

Tom has bowled really well when he has been given the opportunity for Simpson’s side and has been rewarded with his place for this weekend’s game at Castleford.

I will also be in the 1st XI for this week’s game as unfortunately Jack Holt has picked up a fairly serious injury.

He has torn the tendons in his ankle and will have a while on the sidelines which means there is a seam bowling berth up for grabs.

Tom and I are good friends and have played a lot of cricket together in the 2nd XI, but we both know when we get thrown the ball on Saturday we will be bowling to try and get the same place in the side next weekend. A great situation to be in knowing that you need to be at your best to stay in the side.

Although I love captaining the 2nd XI, I believe everyone who is at the club should be striving to play first team cricket, and I am no different.

I’ve relinquished the role this week and Josh Mainprize will take over as 2nd XI captain, I’m sure he will enjoy it and do a great job in charge of a talented bunch of players.

The 2nd XI take on Welton & Brough this weekend at Scarborough College. Tom Precious comes back into the side as well as Mainprize and Sam Carver, who have both been on holiday.

We will be looking to bounce back from defeat last week at Hovingham where we just let the game get away from us in the early and later part of the innings and it became a chase that we couldn’t make despite runs for Ashish Kundi, Theo Smith and James Bruce.

With no scheduled game last week, the 3rd XI return to action this weekend against Cloughton and will be able to include some lads who have been with the 2nd XI in recent weeks due to people missing.

Jordan Welford needs to bowl a stack of overs for the 3rds and get some wickets under his belt to give him the confidence to make the step back up, while Kawsar Ahmed and Chris Hunter both bowled well for the 2nds and have left a good impression for future selection.

James Pick is also in the same boat as Jordan, just with the bat. He needs to get himself some big scores in the 3rd XI and push the lads in the 2nds for their place, after he showed signs of promise during his spell in the 2nds.

It will be the third time in a week where Scarborough will play Cloughton after playing Evening League action against each other on Tuesday night, then playing a Cayley Cup tie on Wednesday night.

The Evening League side have made a good start to the campaign under Matty Kay’s guidance winnings two from two games.

The victory over Cloughton was comprehensive with Theo Smith blasting 52 before Jonathan Read hit his first senior 50 for the club, reaching the landmark with the final ball of the innings and taking us to 155-2. Cloughton were then bowled out for 90 with Matty Kay taking 3-7.

Theo hasn’t really had much time in the middle of late, and it has been good to give him an opportunity to score some runs and get a bit of confidence back into his batting, hopefully his form will transpire into runs for the 2nd XI this weekend.

Jonathan Read also continued to impress, after taking two smart catches stood up to the stumps on Saturday, he showed his worth with the bat on Tuesday night, playing a well built innings to make 50 at just 14 years of age, putting some pressure on Mike Hirst for his return to Scarborough once he has finished university.

It has shown the worth of the Evening League side already, being able to give lads the chance to get some runs, or impress for selection at the weekend.

Winning both games has been a great effort from the mix of Junior and slightly older lads which make up the squad.

Yorkshire (Tykes fast bowler Mitchell Starc, left) visit North Marine Road this Sunday to take on the Unicorns, a team made up of players which don’t have a first-class county contract and are looking to impress.

There have been some players who have moved on from the Unicorns, such as Ned Eckersley, who kept wicket for Leicestershire at Scarborough earlier in the month, showing that the scheme can be a success.

While they have struggled to pick up many wins in the CB40 competition the same could be said for Yorkshire, who have never faired too well in the limited overs competitions.

Both teams won their last group game though, so it should be a good encounter at North Marine Road and the weather is forecast to be good, which always makes watching cricket much more fun.