After a relentless period of washouts in both league and cup action, North East Cheshire returned to some cricketing action with all three Saturday sides managing to dodge the weather and complete their fixtures. It meant it was the turn of the bowlers to come to the fore in helpful conditions
Cheadle Hulme v 1stXI
A well-contested game at a sodden Grove Park went down to the final delivery as the 1stXI narrowly failed to produce a statement win over the side who entered the day top of Division 1.
The Jets played their best cricket of the season in the field after an extended break for rain, returning to execute their plans and take their catches. The result was bowling the hosts out for 108 and, more importantly, claiming back some of the overs lost from the second innings. Toby Carson (5-49) collected a second consecutive five-wicket haul in his emerging bowling partnership with Danny Williams (4-42).
It left the batsmen with a tricky chase that required some immediate impetus given the 22 over allocation. Charlie Dahlenburg unfurled consecutive boundaries against opposing overseas Nauman Akram but the innings continued to ebb and flow towards an inevitable tight finish.
Jack Airey struck a composed 27 and, when Sam Waller launched a maximum in the penultimate over, the pendulum appeared to have swung the Jets’ way. Akram had other ideas though and a superb final over limited North East to 6 of the 9 runs required, Waller bowled from the final ball of the innings for an enterprising 35.
2ndXI v Bunbury
The 2ndXI found a simple solution for the threat posed by the torrential downpour that engulfed the county, win before it arrives! Bunbury arrived at London Road as one of the form teams in the division but the Jets required just over 20 overs of play to collect another win to strengthen their relentless march towards the title.
The combination of an underprepared deck and new ball pair Simon Hare (6-13) and Manusha Wettasinghe (3-10) was too much for the visitors who were quickly shot out for 27. A manic chase then ensued as the clouds darkened, the winning runs arriving in the 9th over of the reply as the rain began to fall.
3rdXI v Cheadle Hulme Ladybridge
League leaders Cheadle Hulme Ladybridge became the first team to defeat the 3rdXI at Jackson’s edge this season as they snuck home for a 1-wicket win in a Duckworth Lewis affected run chase. Sam Potter (29) was again in the runs as North East hit 91-7 from a reduced allocation of overs.
It looked like being enough when braces for Jack Parkey, Alex Oswell, Eddie Owens and Dave Potter reduced Ladybridge to 72-8. Skipper Owen Johnson then struck in his first over too to leave his side one wicket from victory, but some lusty hitting from number nine Massey took the visitors to their amended target.
Bowdon v 4thXI
Whilst the Saturday sides all survived the weather to complete their fixtures to a conclusion, the 4thXI were abandoned at Bowdon without a ball being bowled. They remain top of the division having won all of their completed fixtures.
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1stXI v Ashton-on-Mersey
1stXI v Haslington