Longridge CC win the battle of the top two

Neil Holden top-scored for Longridge at the weekend
Neil Holden top-scored for Longridge at the weekend
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Saturday’s showers could not prevent Longridge CC from remaining at the top of the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield Premier Division.

In a match reduced to 31 overs a side, Longridge got the better of Croston by 47 runs.

Longridge batted first and compiled 185-5 from their overs, led by Neil Holden (49) and Josh Mullin (32).

After being put into bat by their hosts, Longridge lost Kyle Helm (14) with the score on 28 before Holden and Mullin added 68 for the second wicket.

John Simpson took seven balls in making 12 but he and Holden were both out with the score on 122.

Tom Howarth (8) was also dismissed but James Whitehead struck 29 not out from only 22 deliveries.

Along with Ian Simpson (5 not out), that helped Longridge to their final score – though they were helped by 28 extras for good measure.

Callum McIlveen (2-76) and Lee Childs (2-28) were the main wicket takers for Croston, whose reply saw them lose a couple of early wickets.

Matt Greenall did the damage, accounting for Stephen Langton (1) and Ian Dickinson (1) as Croston were reduced to 13-2.

They had recovered to 45-2 but Lee Childs’ dismissal for 34 triggered a collapse which saw three wickets fall for 11 runs.

Jake Parsons (8) and McIlveen (1) were both run out as Croston slumped to 56-5.

Sam Marsh and Lewis Bland put on 33 for the sixth wicket but Bland (4) was out with the score on 89, followed a run later by Marsh (38) as Croston were 90-7.

With Longridge looking for the final three wickets, they were frustrated by the Croston lower order.

Jonathan Driver added 22 for the eighth wicket with Adam Sexton, who was undefeated on 27 as Croston closed on 138-8, Greenall recording the best figures for Longridge with 3-37.