Longridge skipper happy with return to winning ways

James Whitehead was undefeated on 25 as Longridge won by six wickets at Croston
James Whitehead was undefeated on 25 as Longridge won by six wickets at Croston

Longridge CC skipper Kyle Helm was a happy man following their belated return to winning ways at the weekend.

After a tie and four consecutive defeats ended their Moore and Smalley Palace Shield Premier Division title hopes, Helm’s players recorded a six-wicket win at Croston on Saturday.

The damage was done by the bowlers with Jonathan Millward claiming four wickets and Ian Simpson taking three in dismissing Croston for 121.

Chasing a low total, and with the pressure off somewhat, the Longridge batsmen reached their target with only four wickets down and inside 30 overs.

Luke Platt led their run chase with 58 while Tom Howarth (30) and James Whitehead (25 not out) also contributed ahead of Saturday’s home match against Thornton Cleveleys (1pm).

“There was a bit of enjoyment back in the dressing room and smiles back on people’s faces which was good to see,” Helm said.

“We just went out there and enjoyed it rather than worrying about getting the win.

“If anything it’s probably been a bit more nervy in the dressing room in the last month than when we were at the top of the league.

“The lads are more than good enough to get wins and we haven’t been doing so but the feeling was back to how it was in July.

“We got Jon Millward back, which was brilliant because he led from the front and gave them nothing.

“After he bowled his 15 overs, there were only 15 left so Ian and Matt came on and cleaned up the tail when they were trying to kick on and get a decent score.

“Then, with the bat, Luke was brilliant as were Tom and James, so it was good to see them get a few runs.

“There was no pressure on them and the runs came freely rather than in games where we have been scratching around.”