Two Titles and Three Promotions on Final Weekend

Two Titles and Three Promotions on Final Weekend
19 Sep 2022

An incredible summer of cricket ended in the best possible way as all three Saturday senior sides were promoted. The 1stXI’s title win was matched by the 2ndXI with their final day victory, whilst an incredible 7-game winning streak for the 3rdXI carried them into a runners-up spot that had looked impossible mid-season. All three sides will now play a higher standard of cricket in 2023 and can celebrate their hard-earned spoils through the presentation season this autumn.

Winnington Park v 1stXI

After an intense season, a dead rubber tie at Winnington Park saw the 1stXI presented with the Division 3 championship shield at the tea interval. It was the highlight of an otherwise lighthearted affair with a mixed batting order and some hitherto untried and untested Jets bowling options. Jamie Henderson was promoted from his usual spot at 11 to open the batting and he helped contribute to an opening stand of 37. That would prove to be the highest partnership of the innings as some real final-day dismissals prevented posting a big score.

Saul Gould was bizarrely stumped, Will Westerby trod on his stumps, and, in an entertaining late burst, Will Ritchie (26) was bowled from the fifth ball of a Jackson (4-60) over in which he had hit the first four deliveries into the pavilion and was targeting the full 36. The slightly topsy turvy lineup did see the 1stXI add over fifty runs for the final two wickets, but all out inside 42 overs for 158 didn’t bode well for a positive result with the ball scheduled to be thrown around in the second innings.

The regular bowlers did keep things tight early doors, but a bad drop of home skipper Butcher (36) before he had scored helped support a fifty opening stand. The game picked up some pace with youngsters Bowden and Gould entering the attack, but an unlikely collapse of 4-6 instigated by Andrew Clarke (2-17) taking two wickets in an over after forcing a run out kept all results on the cards. The home side stood firm though, getting home eight wickets down as the ones enjoyed a rare game with the pressure off.

2ndXI v Trafford MV

Needing a win of any magnitude to confirm promotion as champions, the 2ndXI did the business in a low-scoring affair at London Road to have the title sewn up by mid-afternoon. The hard work was done in the first innings after winning the toss, visitors Trafford MV shot out for 54 in a ruthless bowling performance. Sam Turnbull set the tone with 3-8 from 6 overs with the new ball before business as usual for the spin pair of Jimmy Williams (4-11) and Adam Burgess (2-11). Only opener Mike Jones (25) made any impact with the bat but when he was run out by Andy Heath at 41-4 the innings soon subsided.

The second innings then appeared to be a formality but developed a needless edge as Matt Mullany was dismissed via mankad without warning. In the race to get to the bar the Jets would lose another five wickets, including Matt Wragg with the scores level, but Rory Caine’s patient 22 from the top of the order led the way. Old stager Jimmy Williams hit the winning runs to the boundary to complete the formalities inside 19 overs, a deserved league title with 19 wins and just 2 losses from the completed fixtures. Division A cricket awaits, promoted out of the regionalised structure and one step from the target of County League cricket.

Glazebury v 3rdXI

With the ones title already in the bag and the twos unlikely to slip up, most attention on Saturday focused on the 3rdXI. A six-game winning streak landed them with a chance of promotion from out of nowhere, needing just a two-point swing on the final day to overhaul second-place Urmston. A trip to basement side Glazebury was a blessing, as was winning the toss and electing to bat in the hope of pouring on the runs for maximum points. Opener Alex Dickman did the job, providing the backbone of the innings with an even 100 (11x4, 1x6, 123b) that saw the Jets amass an imposing 224-4.

Three quick wickets up top for Luke Johnson (3-15) then made the 15pts a formality. Toby Street (2-6), Ed Parkinson (2-10), Kris Bajaj (2-18) and Owen Johnson (1-3) all chipped in as the hosts were quickly bundled out for 84 meaning attention turned to Cheadle Hulme’s game with Urmston. Live updates quickly confirmed the Jets hopes, the Urmies slipping to defeat against Cheadle Hulme, ending an uncredible summer in which all three senior Saturday sides won promotion and sparking celebrations long into the night.

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