Northern Premier League champions Blackpool bounced back from successive defeats with a crushing win over Kendal, though Fleetwood lost a top-of-the-table thriller at Garstang.
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Without a substitute professional for their previous defeat at Fleetwood, Blackpool recruited Ramsbottom’s Daryn Smit against Kendal and the South African made a massive contribution to the hosts’ eight-wicket win.
The Cumbrians chose to bat but after putting on 52 for their first wicket they slumped spectacularly to 72 all out.
There was little sign of the carnage to follow as top scorer Wes Marshall (41, with seven fours) set a solid platform with Saeed Barwiala.
However, both were stumped by Craig Brown and the nine Kendal players who followed them in managed just seven runs between them, with six failing to score.
South African Smit dismissed four players for ducks to finish with 5-17 from his 9.4 overs as Kendal failed to add a single run after reaching 72-5.
The earlier damage had been done by Matty Siddall, who dismissed all the top four on his way to a second five-for of the season (5-13 from nine overs).
Blackpool then lost two early wickets themselves before Smit joined Matt Houston for an unbroken stand of 59 which sped them to victory in 19.3 overs at 76-2.
Smit hit six fours and a six in his unbeaten 46 from 52 balls, while Houston carried his bat for 27 to ease Blackpool back into the top half of the table.
Fleetwood had hoped to replace Garstang in second place but lost an exciting contest which went to the wire by just two runs.
Garstang chose to bat and a series of solid contributions saw them reach 196-5 at Riverside.
Fleetwood made an early breakthrough but a second-wicket stand between captain Mark Walling (49) and opener Michael Wellings (40) got the hosts back on track.
Professional Neels Bergh dismissed both but Dan Curwen (44) and wicketkeeper Matthew Crowther (39 not out) maintained the Garstang momentum.
Danny Gilbert then dismissed both Fleetwood openers cheaply on his way to 3-46 from 12 overs but the innings was held together by Bergh’s 74.
The South African’s fourth half-century of the season was his best score yet but a match-winning partnership proved elusive as only Toby Lush (34) at number eight managed more than 20.
It left last man James Amor requiring three for victory off the final ball, from which he was stumped.
Fleetwood slip below Netherfield into fourth place and are now 18 points behind leaders Leyland, who were never likely to become the first team all season to lose in the league to St Annes.
The visitors made a fight of it at Stanning Memorial Ground, choosing to bat and setting a target of 201 only to lose by four wickets.
Professional Tim Smithies carried his for 91 but couldn’t convert his fourth St Annes 50 into a second century as his most resolute support came from number seven Ben Reader (25).
Karl Cross was the pick of the bowlers with 3-45 from 14 overs as St Annes were all out with five balls remaining.
Victory was then sealed with 11 balls to spare as opener Henry Thomson made 86, sharing in the stand of the match for the second wicket with Said Badar (52) as Leyland reached 204-6 to maintain their five-point lead at the top.
Second-bottom St Annes increased their advantage over Barrow to seven points but are 27 from safety.
Other results: Chorley 127-2 beat Longridge 126 by eight wickets, Netherfield 161-4 beat Barrow 157-9 by six wickets, Penrith 73 lost to Fulwood and Broughton 115 by 42 runs.
Blackpool and St Annes were both well beaten away from home in the quarter-finals of the Lancashire Cricket Federation Club Knockout.
Blackpool went down by thumping 174-run margin at Darwen and St Annes lost by seven wicket sat Netherfield.
Darwen chose to bat at Birch Hall and piled on 296-6 from their 45 overs, with captain Marques Ackerman scoring exactly 100 for the Lancashire League club.
Blackpool were then dismissed for 122 in 23.4 overs. Craig Brown rescued the visitors from 16-4 with his 64 from 58 balls but nobody else managed more than 15.
St Annes were put in and were dismissed for 126 in 43.5 overs at Netherfield, while the Cumbrians made light work of amassing 128-3 in 23.1 overs, witha an unbeaten 72 from Bevan Small.
Darwen face Horwich RMI in next month's semis and Netherfield welcome Norden, who overcame Garstang by five wickets.
Thornton Cleveleys won through top the final of cricket’s Meyler Cup on August 18 with a 10-wicket win over Mawdesley.
Chasing a target of 130, openers Richard Jenkinson and Jon Eade required only 25.2 overs to reach their target at Illawalla. Wicketkeeper Eade struck 13 fours and a six in his 66, while Jenkinson’s 56 included 12 fours.
Mawdesley had chosen to bat and opener Gary Wadeson scored 61 but struggled for support, Rick Blampied taking 5-18 from 5.5 overs.
In the final they will face Croston, who defeated South Shore by one run in a thriller. Croston set a target of 204-4 after Sam March scored 76 from 82 balls.
Shore finished their 40 overs on 203-9 after a late scramble for runs, having been given the perfect platform by Luke Jardine (49) and Nathan Bolus (40) taking them to 122-1..
Great Eccleston are Fylde’s leading club in the Palace Shield, climbing into the top half of the premier division with a three-wicket victory at Vernon Carus. Ecc overtook South Shore, who collapsed to lose at Standish despite Mitch Bolus taking five wickets.
Fylde now find themselves nine points adrift at the bottom after the three teams immediately above them all won.
It’s so tight at the tight of division one A as four points separate the top four, with Kirkham and Wesham and Thornton Cleveley both two points behind leaders Tarleton.
An unbroken stand of 71 between Andrew Hogarth and Stephen Wright eased K&W to a nine-wicket win over Mawdesley, while there were half-centuries for Richard Jenkinson and Jon Eade in TC’s eight-run win at Torrisholme, where Oliver Vincent’s five wickets were vital.
Moore and Smalley Palace Shield results
Premier division: Fylde 166-8 (K Moore 48, E Fairhurst 4-47) lost to New Longton 189-8 (S Nalbandh 50, Z Jafferi 4-47) by 23 runs, Standish 215 (N Smith 47, U Khushnood 44, M Bolus 5-37 beat South Shore 190 (N Bolus 51, L Jardine 48, S Callow 6-65) by 25 runs, Vernon Carus 130 lost to Great Eccleston 132-7 by three wickets, Eccleston 258-4 beat Preston 180 by 78 runs, Lancaster 166-9 beat Croston 165-8 by one wicket, Penwortham 217 beat Morecambe 184 by 33 runs.
Division 1A: Kirkham and Wesham 132-1 (A Hogarth 57 no) beat Mawdesley 131 (A Harrison 4-32) by nine wickets, Torrisholme 231-9 (D Woods 81, O Vincent 5-39, G Tirrell 4-87) lost to Thornton Cleveleys 239-4 (R Jenkinson 64, J Eade 51) by eight runs Whittle and Clayton-le-Woods 174-7 (F Basharat 65, R Thomas 3-38) beat Norcross 173-6 (D Thomas 53, C Quinn 47, I Patel 3-27) by three wickets, Rufford 187 beat Hoghton 83 by 104 runs, Tarleton 240-4 beat Grimsargh 141 by 99 runs.
Alex Rankin scored a career-best 126 as Ormskirk cruised to victory by 98 runs in their top v bottom clash at Lytham in the Liverpool Competition.
The opener fired 11 fours and four sixes in his 164-ball innings, putting on 109 for the third wicket with George Lavelle (56) before the visitors declared at 242-3 after 53.1 overs, having elected to bat at Church Road.
Lytham opener Matthew Cartmell then did his utmost to emulate Rankin with a season’s best 53 from 56 balls, including 10 fours.
Cartmell shared in a third-wicket partnership of 51 with Matthew Taaffe, but the opener’s dismissal saw Lytham subside from 90-3 to 103-8 and the match was all over in 36.2 overs with the reply on 144.
Ryan Maddock claimed 4-39 from 9.2 overs and there were three wickets apiece for Tom Hartley and Scott Lees, while wicketkeeper Gary Knight’s five catches included Lytham’s top three.
The win lifts Ormskirk into second place in the ECB premier league, though still 39 points behind Bootle, while winless Lytham are 20 adrift at the bottom.