Lytham CC have nothing to lose as promotion chase goes to the final day

The pressure is elsewhere as Lytham CC go into their final game of the Liverpool Competition season against Highfield CC.

Friday, 17th September 2021, 4:45 pm

Lytham have a slim chance of promotion tomorrow as they sit fourth in the table, 18 points behind Birkenhead Park with a possible 25 on offer for them.

Skipper Matt Taaffe is taking a fearless approach into the game, especially given his side’s fine form after edging past leaders Newton-le-Willows last time out.

“We’ve got nothing to lose,” he told the Gazette.

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“We’re flying. I don’t think we’ve lost for 12 weeks now.

“It’s all in Birkenhead Park and Rainford’s hands so we’re the underdog going into it.

“We’ll just keep doing what we’re doing and, any slip-ups, we’ll hopefully pounce on and reap the rewards come seven o’clock on Saturday.

“Going to top of the league, going so close in such a tight game and getting the win right at the end was pretty good. It was one of our best wins.

“They’re the wins that you play the game for.

“It kept our season alive and it allowed us to be in the position that we are for Saturday’s game.

“Highfield are a good side, I know a few of them personally and I’ve played against them for years. They’re a seriously good bowling attack.

“They have a good pro themselves and they’re a side that can come from any position and win a game of cricket so we’re going to have to be good, do our stuff and hopefully be better on the day.”

Lytham’s pro, Zia-ur-Rehman Akbar, starred again last week with six wickets.

It took his tally to 78 in 15 games this season and Taaffe is enjoying captaining him.

He said: “He takes a lot of pressure off me which is good, it allows me to concentrate on the others.

“It’s pretty special to captain him, he’s so good.

“You just think he’s going to have a bad week and he hasn’t done – and hopefully it’s not this week!

“He’s been absolutely incredible, his stats are mind-boggling.

“He’s the talk of the league, he’s the talk of the county and he’s the talk of all cricket around here.

“It’s good going into the games. All the lads are worried about him, they know he’s the threat and he keeps delivering.

“I’ve run out of words for him. He keeps pulling it out of the bag time and time again and you can only applaud it.”

TOMORROW’S FIXTURES

Liverpool Competition first XI first division (12pm): Ainsdale v Fleetwood Hesketh, Birkenhead Park v Old Xaverians, Colwyn Bay v Liverpool, Highfield v Lytham, Newton-le-Willows v Rainford, Northop Hall v St Helens Town.

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