Lancashire League Round-up

Lancashire Evening Telegraph

8 June 1998

MATT Wilson experienced a bizarre day of highs and lows for Rawtenstall against Bacup.

Wilson was forced to go to hospital during the Bacup innings when, while pushing the sightscreen, he trapped his foot.

But he was able to return to the ground in time to clinch two batting bonus points for his side.

Rawtenstall needed a four off the final ball of the game to reach 90 per cent of the Bacup target.

And Wilson made sure by hitting Terry Lord out of the ground for six.

Yet again professional Keith Arthurton was the mainstay of the Rawtenstall effort with another stunning unbeaten century.

And his counterpart, Brad White, built the foundation for Bacup's total of 186-7 with a solid 69.

Bacup's batsmen struggled to cope with the left arm spin of Rawtenstall skipper Keith Roscoe, who claimed 6-77.

The battle between second and third placed East Lancs and Rishton ended in stalemate.

East Lancs recovered after a slow start, Phil Bolton top-scoring with 45 in a total of 158-7.

The tight bowling of Corrie Jordaan and Russell Whalley was responsible for the modest total.

But Rishton lost early wickets, East Lancs pro Brad Young taking 4-38 from 20 overs.

Paul Whalley and Jordaan ground out the draw after Rishton had slumped to 48-7.

Whalley faced 76 balls for his eight runs, while Jordaan faced 64 balls without scoring.

Jez Hope spearheaded Lowerhouse's 30-run victory at Colne as the Burnley side ended their poor run with a second league victory of the season.

After declaring on 180-8, Lowerhouse bowled out the hosts for 150 with Hope claiming 7-65 from a near 22-over spell. Colne were never in the hunt after losing professional Joe Scuderi for three despite 40 in the middle order from skipper Gary Laycock.

At one point they had subsided to 115-8 and although Nick Moulding revived hopes of a draw Hope cleaned up the tail with just over two overs to go.

Professional Matthew Mott made 62 with seven fours and a six at the top of order for Lowerhouse after they had been put in with Gary Moorhouse holding the middle order together with 43.

Enfield's batsman launched a furious assault on the Todmorden attack but it was not enough to secure victory as the visitors held on for a draw.

Enfield raced to 241-5 declared after just 43 overs with half-centuries for skipper Andy Barker, his brother Gary and professional Ottis Gibson.

Andy Barker's half-century came in 77 balls with seven fours before Gary and Gibson stepped up the tempo in a 108-run stand for the fourth wicket. Barker hit seven fours and a six in his 47-ball fifty and Gibson scored even more quickly on his way to 69. His fifty took just 43 balls as he smashed eight fours and two sixes.

Todmorden's misery was compounded by the loss of another bonus point for a slow over rate but their day was saved by a resolute batting display.

Skipper Richard Baigent led by example as his unbeaten 71 off 88 balls laid the foundations for a draw which was secured 2.2 overs early because of rain.

Enfield were therefore denied a possible second bonus point as father and son Bernard and Sam Reidy, 15, looked to add to their six wickets.

Neil McGarrell scored 51 and took six wickets but Church were unable to finish off Accrington and had to settle for a draw.

McGarrell's runs came in a total of 165-8 which proved well beyond Accrington once Ryan Campbell fell to the Church professional for 56. His runs came off just 60 balls with seven fours and a six as he dominated an opening stand of 54 with Stefan Heins, Accrington's best this season.

Campbell went with the score on 72 and Accrington then capitulated to 99-8.

Haslingden shaded the honours in their drawn game with local rivals Ramsbottom thanks to a bowling point secured when Barry Knowles bowled Brian Taylor late on for 40.

The draw had long since been guaranteed however as Haslingden's 200-5 declared became out of Ramsbottom's reach.

Rain delays and interruptions left the home side with just 42 overs to reach their target which was never on once Ian Harvey holed out to mid-wicket for 12.

A 91-ball fifty from opener Neil Richardson and Taylor's 40 ensured that Ramsbottom were never in danger though.

Haslingden sped towards their declaration thanks to an explosive 72 from professional Hamish Anthony who faced just 42 balls and hit six fours and three sixes, one of which was deposited over the river off the bowling of Harvey.

Anthony shared in a 96-run partnership with Mike Ingham whose unbeaten 50 came at a more leisurely pace.

Roger's Harping on!

Lancashire League: Burnley 82, Nelson 171-4 dec

FOR ALL Roger Harper's heroics at Bacup in a eight-year stay that yielded 8,600 runs and 610 wickets, the Lancashire League title never returned to Lanehead during his tenure of office, writes PETE OLIVER.

In his first season at Nelson, the West Indian all-rounder could at last capture that elusive championship winners' medal.

Harper has guided Nelson to the top of the table and extended their lead when spinning Burnley to an 89-run defeat at Turf Moor yesterday with figures of 6-20 from 17 overs.

He plays down title talk at this early stage of the campaign but with 41 league wickets in the bank already he looks certain to take Nelson close.

``I am very pleased with the day's work, especially because we got the right result.

``It's pretty tight at the moment and the pressure is on us to keep winning. It's early days and we are happy with our position but the pressure is on to keep performing. There is still a long way to go,'' said Harper.

Set a victory target of 172 in 47 overs Burnley were unable to cope with Harper on a difficult wicket enlivened by recent heavy rain.

Two overs were lost and Harper acknowledged that the weather can play a big part with no re-arranged fixtures and no reduced targets catered for under the rules this season. Yesterday that had no bearing as Harper exploited the helpful conditions which saw him bowl five straight maidens at one point, three of which yielded wickets.

That gave him figures of 4-3 after eight overs and the contest was over.

``When we looked at the way the pitch played we thought it would be difficult for them to get that score,'' added Harper who earlier weighed in with 41 including two huge sixes.

``It turned quite a bit but it was really the unpredictable bounce. There was also some excellent close catching. All in all our catching and fielding was excellent.''

Nine of the Burnley batsman perished to catches, the pick of which was a diving effort by former Burnley YTS goalkeeper Marcus Phelan close in at backward square to remove Peter Brown.

He took a further tumbling effort to account for home skipper Andy McLeod, who stood his ground obviously disappointed at the bat-pad decision. And in all six of the Burnley batsman were snaffled up by fielders around the bat as the ball spun and bounced prodigiously for Harper.

Most disappointing for the hosts, however, must have been the dismissal of professional Anthony Botha who sold his wicket cheaply when pulling Danny Kegg straight down the throat of Duncan Spencer who had positioned himself at deep square specifically for that piece of misjudgement.

That reduced Burnley to 25-4 and without the necessary application, admittedly in trying circumstances, the draw was never an option either as Burnley's run of successive wins was brought to an abrupt halt.

Nelson had no such problems with the bat, even though boundaries remained scarce because of the soft outfield and Botha also got some lift with his left-arm spin.

His only wicket, though, was that of Spencer after the Nelson skipper marked his return to Turf Moor with a half-century. He laid the foundations for victory with a 77-run opening stand with Craig Walton.

That brought Harper to the wicket in the 28th over and the Guyanan added a further 72 before Spencer went at 149.

Harper twice hit David Connolly for six over wide mid-wicket as Nelson pushed on towards their declaration after 51 overs.

That gave them more than enough time to register their fifth win of a season that promises to add some silverware to Harper's enjoyment in his new surroundings. ``I am very comfortable with the players I am playing with and thoroughly enjoying it. Everybody is chipping in and playing to their strengths,'' he added.

Source: The Lancashire Evening Telegraph

Contributed by CricInfo Management, and reproduced with permission

Date-stamped : 07 Oct1998 - 04:31