Longridge CC look to repeat their first half

Longridge CC made it 10 wins from 11 league games last weekend
Longridge CC made it 10 wins from 11 league games last weekend
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Ian Simpson has challenged his Longridge team-mates to replicate their results in the first half of the season as they seek the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield title.

Last Saturday’s 161-run win against South Shore made it six in a row and 10 victories from 11 for Longridge at the halfway point of the league season.

Those wins see Longridge top of the Premier Division with 118 points, six clear of Lancaster and 15 ahead of third-placed Croston.

“It’s been a great first half of the season, not only in the league but also in the Meyler Cup as we’re in the semi-finals there as well,” Simpson said.

“We’ve now got to keep up those performances and do the same in the second half.

“We aren’t in it to finish second; we want to win it and we hope it’ll be our last year in the Palace Shield because that means we’ve got promoted and established ourselves in the Northern League.

“We want to win the Palace Shield and go into the Northern League as champions and, hopefully, a good eight or nine games will take us there.”

Given that Longridge have not lost a league game since defeat against Kendal on May 19, confidence is sky high as they prepare to host a struggling Great Eccleston side on Saturday.

It is the reverse match from the opening day, which saw Longridge win by two wickets.

Given the clubs’ contrasting fortunes since with Great Eccleston five points clear of the bottom two, some may think Longridge are odds-on favourites for another win.

“We’re quietly confident we can win on Saturday without being arrogant about it,” Simpson said.

“Great Eccleston have lost eight players from the team which won the league a few years ago and, when you lose players of that quality, it’s like starting again.

“From a personal point of view, I hope they get through this year because I like them as a club.”