NETHERFIELD batsman Ben Barrow has highlighted the performances of bowler Mark Clarkson as a major contributing factor in the club’s upturn in form.
Clarkson arrived at Parkside Road from Bolton le Sands in the winter and has joined forces with Sri Lankan professional Saliya Saman in spearheading the Netherfield bowling attack.
He has ten Northern League wickets to his name so far this summer, and recently came to the fore as the club sealed TWP Wealth Twenty20 progress, snaring seven wickets in two matches against Kendal and Penrith.
With Barrow recently taking over from John Huck behind the stumps, he is perfectly placed to judge the merits of the right-arm seamer.
“I’m really good friends with him from living in Bolton le Sands and he’s met a lot of the other lads before,” he said.
“He has settled in really well and is bowling equally well at the minute with a lot of pace and aggression.
“He and Sammy often set the tone for the match at the start of the innings. Especially during the last five or six games we’ve won, it’s probably been down to the opening bowling spell from those two.
“Mark’s got some good wickets in the Twenty20s as well and has dismissed some pros. He’s raw and he bowls quickly at the stumps.
“Some of the balls he has bowled in the Twenty20s have been remarkable – he seemingly just gets in right from ball one.”
As well as recording five Twenty20 victories on the spin and securing a place at finals days, Netherfield also made it back-to-back league victories with success at Darwen.
A Readers Cup win at Lancaster followed which sets up a home tie with Leyland, with Barrow firmly of the view a corner has been turned in Netherfield’s season.
“We spoke about the Twenty20s perhaps giving us some momentum and we’ve won five out of five in that competition,” he added,
“We’ve really settled in as a team in the last few weeks and everyone is doing their job. Everything which is thrown at us we’re coping with.
“Browny (Marc Brown) is getting runs and Sammy (Saliya Saman) is delivering with bat and ball so it’s all good.
“It all came together against Darwen which was brilliant to be fair. Browny batted absolutely superbly and Ben Phillips was good also.
“We’re being really aggressively at the minute, batting properly but positively at the same time and it seems to be working.”