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Consistency is the key for Longridge CC

Ian Simpson hailed an excellent collective performance from Longridge CC's first XI last weekend
Ian Simpson hailed an excellent collective performance from Longridge CC's first XI last weekend
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First play second on Saturday in the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield with Longridge bowler Ian Simpson calling for consistent performances.

Table-topping Longridge meet second-placed Croston, looking for an eighth victory in nine matches.

With promotion into the Northern League the club’s stated aim this season, more performances like the one which downed Thornton Cleveleys last weekend will be key.

Longridge’s batsmen found their form to post a score of 234-5 while the bowlers continued their good early-season form in restricting their opponents to 192-9.

That win, coupled with Croston’s loss against Vernon Carus, sees Longridge on 83 points, six clear of Saturday’s opponents and third-placed Lancaster.

“It’s a topsy-turvy division and so close that it’s anyone’s for the taking,” Simpson said.

“Hopefully we can have some consistent performances to try and open up a bit of a lead.

“If we beat Croston on Saturday then there will be a bit of a buffer just in case we do have a bad game somewhere along the way.

“Everyone can beat everyone else in this division so we’re striving for consistency.

“If we can put in a seven or eight out of 10 performance every week then, hopefully, it will be enough to win the game.”

After a difficult start to the season with the bat, things turned in the right direction for Longridge last weekend.

Josh Mullin’s unbeaten 88 was the foundation as they capitalised on good weather and an excellent wicket.

“When Nick (Wilkinson, skipper) won the toss, he had no hesitation in batting first and we made good use of it,” Simpson said.

“The track was unbelievable and Josh pretty much carried his bat; he helped set up a platform for the last five or six overs when the lower order can go in and throw the bat a bit.”