Fylde coast cricket review: Lytham end with a win as South Shore lose to champions

Lytham's Ben Saunders
Lytham's Ben Saunders

Captain Ben Saunders took a hat-trick as Lytham ended a modest Liverpool Competition campaign on a high with a two-wicket win at Leigh.

A third-wicket stand of 99 between Adam Shallcross (54) and captain Thomas Foster (44) had put the hosts in a strong position.

However, 127-2 would become 142-7 after Saunders dismissed Shallcross, Toby Bulcock and Zacari Donohoe off successive balls on his way to 4-24 from 8.4 overs.

A late Leigh flourish saw them declare at 190-8 after 43.4 overs but this wasn’t quite enough as Lytham survived a scare to win at 194-8.

It looked plain sailing as Lytham reached 151-3 after stands of 89 for the first wicket (Matthew Stevenson 40, Taylor Cornall 39) and 56 for the fourth (Saunders 43).

But with just seven needed to win and five wickets remaining, Lytham lost three of them in limping over the line as Bulcock and Shallcross both claimed three victims in their 10 overs.

The result made no difference to the ECB premier league table, Lytham finishing seventh and Leigh fifth in a competition won by Northern CC by a 65-point margin.

Thornton Cleveleys’ total of 68 was enough for a 20-run victory at Lancaster but not enough to stave off premier division relegation on the final weekend of the Palace Shield season.

Lancaster’s loss meant Kendal secured second place and a possible immediate return to the Northern League with an emphatic win over Great Eccleston.

South Shore could not spoil champions Longridge’s party but are the Fylde coast’s highest-placed Shield finishers in seventh.

Fylde will join them in the premier division next season but not as division 1A champions, having lost their title decider with Standish.

Freckleton missed out on promotion but sealed third spot with a derby win over Kirkham and Wesham.

Norcross secured their second tier status in nailbiting style with a two-run victory over Mawdesley.

The win lifted Norcross out of the bottom two, though only one team will be relegated, Whittle and Clayton-le-Woods replacing BAC/EE Preston.

Northern League champions Blackpool celebrated a title double as their second XI clinched Palace Shield 1B with a 79-run win over Morecambe 2, opener Tomas King scoring 65 in Blackpool’s 200-8.

As in the Northern League, Blackpool got the better of Netherfield by seven points, while Fleetwood 2 finished third.

Moore and Smalley Palace Shield premier division: Eccleston 95 lost to Croston 96-3 by seven wickets, Kendal 206-6 (R Shepherd 63no, B Phillips 45) beat Great Eccleston 71 (T Tyson 5-16, C Miller 4-24 ) by 135 runs, Lancaster 48 lost to Thornton Cleveleys 68 by 20 runs, Longridge 181-4 (J Whitehead 55no) beat South Shore 178-6 (N Bolus 66,D Wilson 3-52) by six wickets, Vernon Carus 280-3 beat Torrisholme 115 by 165 runs, Penwortham v New Longton cancelled.

Division 1A: Freckleton 139 (A Hogarth 40, J Hogarth 4-31) beat Kirkham and Wesham 110-6 (A Harrison 37, J Holland 3-36) by 29 runs, Fylde 103 (Z Khan 5-21) lost to Standish 151-4 (U Kushnood 69) by 48 runs, Grimargh 156 beat BAC/EE Preston 68 by 88 runs, Hoghton 97-1 beat Tarleton 96 by nine wickets, Norcross 138 (I Green 43) beat Mawdesley 136 (P Caunce 44, D Harris 5-28) by two runs, Rufford 72-3 beat Withnell Fold 69 by seven wickets.