Fylde coast cricket review: Defeats at either end of the table on final day

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The curtain came down on Lytham CC’s 2023 Liverpool Competition First Division season with a one-wicket loss against Highfield.

Matt Taaffe’s players had started the day in third place, one point behind Birkenhead Park in the race for the second promotion spot behind champions Newton-le-Willows.

A low-scoring game saw ball dominate bat with 19 wickets falling for only 203 runs on the day.

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Having been asked to bat first by their visitors, Lytham were quickly in trouble as the departures of Myles Child (0) and Matthew Wood (10) left them 14-2.

Lytham Cricket Club professional Avinash Yadav ended the season with another seven wicketsLytham Cricket Club professional Avinash Yadav ended the season with another seven wickets
Lytham Cricket Club professional Avinash Yadav ended the season with another seven wickets
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Guy Roberts (0) and Taaffe (5) also fell cheaply before Steven Croft was out for what proved the top score of 25.

That left Lytham 40-5 but Tom Jefferson and Josh Holden produced the best stand of their innings.

They added 25 before Jefferson was out for 15, followed by Avinash Yadav (0) to leave the score 72-7.

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Holden (17) was out 10 runs later before Lytham’s ninth-wicket pair took them to three figures.

Williams Bookless (5) eventually fell with Richard Openshaw (13) the last man out and Lytham on 101.

In reply, Yadav removed Michael Farrell (9) but Highfield were in the driving seat at 50-1.

Yadav then dismissed Ryan Hargreaves (25), Sudip Chatterjee (23) and Hedley Molyneux (5), while Holden sent back Madduma Lakmal (0) with the score 62-5.

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Jamie Darbyshire and Edwin Brewer rallied, adding 19 before the latter (10) was out to Yadav, who then removed Joel Welsby (0).

Highfield were now 83-7 but, with Lytham seeking an unlikely win, Darbyshire and Ryan Parry took them to within two runs of victory.

Parry (10) was out to Holden before Yadav dismissed Darbyshire (17) to leave the scoreboard reading 100-9.

Rob Halliwell (two not out) got the runs required despite Yadav claiming 7-45 and Holden 2-40.

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As it happened, Lytham’s defeat was immaterial as Birkenhead Park clinched the win they needed to finish as runners-up, beating Old Xaverians by 10 wickets.

Lytham’s loss saw them drop to fourth as they were leapfrogged by Spring View, who beat Caldy by 129 runs.

In the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield, Kirkham & Wesham were relegated from the Premier Division after losing by one run against Mawdesley.

Thornton Cleveleys beat Lancaster by four runs and Great Eccleston won at Vernon Carus by 45 runs.