Longridge CC set Fair for victory

Jon Millward claimed four wickets as Longridge defeated Eccleston
Jon Millward claimed four wickets as Longridge defeated Eccleston
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Longridge remained eight points clear at the top of the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield after a comfortable win against Eccleston on Saturday.

The foundation was laid by the Longridge batsmen who posted a total of 200-7 before their bowlers skittled Eccleston for 82.

Having been asked to bat first by their opponents, Longridge saw Neil Holden and John Simpson put on 30 for the first wicket.

Holden (11) was the first to go, followed by Simpson (20), as both were dismissed by Peter Cummings to leave Longridge 48-2.

Thomas Wilkinson accounted for Zac Christie (12) and Josh Mullin (2) as Longridge slipped to 85-4 before they staged a recovery.

A 50-run stand for the fifth wicket ended when James Fairclough was out for an innings-high 54, followed one run later as Matt Greenall (0) became Wilkinson’s third wicket.

Those wickets meant that Longridge were 136-6 but Tom Howarth (51) and skipper Nick Wilkinson (26 not out) added 64 in taking them to their final score.

In reply, Eccleston saw Jon Millward get the better of Jamie Maitland (0) early on, followed by Wilkinson (13) and Matthew Ashcroft (1) as they fell to 18-3.

Howarth followed up his half-century with the wicket of Tom Langshaw (11) before Adam Norris (8) was out to leave Eccleston 41-5.

Seven runs later and Millward took his fourth wicket with the dismissal of Jordan Bentham (5) before Longridge effectively wrapped up victory by taking three wickets for no runs.

Eccleston had reached 56-6, only for Daniel Wilson to dismiss Sam Bromley (9), Lee Heyes (0) and Cummings (0).

The end looked nigh with the score at 56-9 but Eccleston delayed matters by adding 26 for the final wicket, mainly thanks to Mark Jeffers.

He was 26 not out as Wilson ended the innings by bowling Jack Harrison (2) to end with 4-17.

Millward had claimed 4-31 with the other wickets going to Matt Greenall (1-18) and Howarth (1-14).