A weekend of tricky-looking fixtures for our teams saw mixed fortunes for the 1st & 2nd XIs in the League on Saturday, before the 3rds bowed out of their Cup competition on Sunday.
Skipper Adam Hawley lost the toss in overcast conditions at Flixton but, following the early departure of Liam Parkinson for 7, he posted his first half century of the League campaign (59) and, along with Lahiru Jayakody, saw us past the 100-mark without further loss. The Sri Lankan departed immediately after reaching his 50, with the score on 107. Three wickets in as many overs accounted for the middle order and, despite some welcome runs for Mark Dillnutt (36), the feeling amongst the travelling support was that the total of 207 for 9 against the 2017 Champions may be a little light.
Two early wickets for Scott Kirwin reduced the hosts to 9 for 2, but significant partnerships for the 3rd, 4th & 5th wickets turned things very much in their favour. Scott returned and took a further 2 wickets, finishing with 4 for 36, but there was to be no late drama as Flixton got home by 4 wickets, with 8 overs to spare.
Meanwhile, back at HQ, Archie Moore’s 2nd XI bowled first, having won the toss against the high-flying Rochdale Catholic Club CC. A tidy all-round effort with the ball saw the hitherto unbeaten League leaders dismissed for 139, with wickets for all five bowlers used – Kian Clough (3 for 20) & Casey Roche (3 for 39) leading the way.
Our reply got off to a bad start, Danny Moss departing in the 1st over and, as the innings progressed somewhat shakily to 85 for 6 with 27 of the 45 overs gone, the victory target looked some distance away. But, as in recent weeks, the lads dug deep, and Dan Moriarty (42*) found valuable support from Kian, who finished unbeaten on 20 to go with his earlier wickets, and their 55-run partnership saw us home by 4 wickets.
Both players were also in action on Sunday, as the 3rd XI travelled to Radcliffe for their Per-Fit Sunday Cup 2nd Round tie. The hosts won the toss & batted, posting 211 for 6 from their 40 overs against Dan’s youngsters. Eight bowlers were used, six of them taking a wicket each.
The loss of big-hitting, top-scoring Zak Gregory (34 from 30 balls, including 3×6) would prove pivotal in our reply. There were double-figure contributions from 6 batsmen, but only Zak made it into the thirties as we were dismissed for 180 in the penultimate over, to lose by 31 runs. A valiant effort against a team from Division 1B of the Sunday League structure.
The next action is this coming Friday (8th June), as Kyle O’Reilly’s Saints welcome West Wildcats to Sycamore Park for some GMCL20 action at 6pm.