Lancashire end 77 years of hurt

Blackpool's Lancashire hero Steven Croft

Blackpool's Lancashire hero Steven Croft

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BLACKPOOL’S very own Steven Croft had the honour of striking the historic winning runs as Lancashire were crowned county cricket champions outright for the first time since 1934.

“It’s unbelievable,” said Gazette correspondent Croft after his unbeaten 40 had sealed an eight-wicket victory at Somerset on a final day of the season packed with twists and turns.

“It was all about teamwork, not individuals,” said the 26-year-old, “and this has been a great team all year.”

Set 211 to win on the final afternoon in Taunton, Stephen Moore (71) and Paul Horton (54) got the run chase off to a flying start with a stand of 131 in just 17 overs.

Warwickshire had started the day as title favourites, needing only to take seven wickets for victory at relegated Hampshire. They managed only three all day as the first division’s bottom club held on for a draw and did Lancashire a huge favour.

Lancs’ ten wins included one at Blackpool against Worcestershire.