No flying start for champs St Annes

ST ANNES CC started the defence of their Northern Premier League title with a draw at Netherfield, who took nine points to the visitors’ five.

The hosts set a challenging target of 251-7 as Mark Brown top-scored with 66 and new professional JJ Pienaar added a quickfire 48 off 30 balls.

St Annes were then left holding on at 164-7 as Mimesh Silva took 4-86. Dependable opener Atiq Uz Zaman started his season in style with 73 forthe champions.

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Fleetwood are hoping for a better season and made a fine start with a seven-wicket win at Chorley, who were dismissed for just 58.

Adam Parker destroyed the home batting at Windsor Park with 9-14.

Blackpool started a day after the rest and just missed out on victory in a thriller against the Lancashire Cricket Board XI at Stanley Park yesterday.

New South African pro Dale Deeb took two wickets as Blackpool restricted the Old Trafford side to 183-5, of which oepner Henry Thompson scored 69.

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Victory looked beyond Blackpool until a 64-ball 65 by unbeaten skipper Paul Danson, batting at No.8. However, Danson had to settle for a draw, closing three short of victory at 181-8.

*LYTHAM CC made a winning start as the Liverpool and District Competition got under way with the Ray Digman Trophy group games.

The hosts were eight-wicket winners over Liverpool after taking 27.5 overs to pass their target of 145.

Teenage spinner Danny Edwards made an outstanding debut with 4-42 as Liverpool were skittled out on 36.2 overs.

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Opener Faz Ughradar led the reply with 62 and Taylor’s unbeaten 38 helped them to a comfortable victory.

In the other match in Lytham’s group, Wigan beat Skelmersdale by 41 runs.

*FORTRESS Aigburth crumbled under its opening attack of 2012 as Lancashire made a miserable start to the defence of their LV= County Championship title.

Liverpool proved a hugely successful home for the Red Rose county last season but they were crushed by ten wickets as Australian Steve Magoffin claimed a debut seven-wicket haul for Sussex.

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Magoffin’s scalps included that of top scorer Ashwell Prince for 58 as the hosts were dismissed for 176 in their second innings. Sussex then needed just three balls to polish off victory inside three days.

Lancs return to Aigburth for their second four-day match against Warwickshire, starting Thursday.

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