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Weekend Review Pennine Cricket League
Monday 15th May 2017 @ 15:04 by Mark Phillip


May 13th and 14th:

The weather was certainly kind last weekend allowing a full programme in the Pennine League.  The schedule had left all clubs with a double header and the opportunity to get the season up and running.  Our local Clubs did, however, only manage a single victory from the six matches.

The single triumph came courtesy of a win for Stayley at Austerlands on Saturday.  Sitting mid table in the Premiership Peter Skuse’s side went to the Uber Street Ground and would have been hopeful of maximum points against a side which had failed to register a victory this year.   Stayley’s total of 224-5 was too many for Austerlands who fell 53 short of the target.  Twenty four hours later visitors Crompton unquestionably posed a greater challenge.  With strength in depth in the opposition batting line-up Stayley would have been pleased to limit Crompton to 171 all out.  Hamza Nadeem, pro at Oxford Street, continued his good form with a return of 5-32, leaving him with 30 wickets this campaign. Stayley would have been optimistic of reaching the target, but consistent bowling from Crompton limited them to 153.  Dylan Mclachlan, opening the innings, was the main contributor with 56.  The results leave Stayley in a mid table position.

In the Championship it was a fruitless weekend for both Micklehurst and Ashton.  On Saturday, making the short trip to Uppermill, Michael Blomeley’s team toiled at the hands of the home line-up.  Uppermill posted a mammoth 331-6, with pro Ayas Tazawar leading the way with 139 – an innings which included 12 boundaries and 11 “sixes”.  Tasawar now has just under 500 runs from his 6 innings so far, having put together 4 half centuries to add to his score on Saturday.  A target of 332 to win was beyond Micklehurst, who succumbed for 124.  In-form Shaw visited Richmond Hill the following day.  Micklehurst put together a fighting 220 all out.  Andrew Kohler was the key contributor, but agonisingly fell just short of a century, finishing on 97.  The Shaw line-up boasts overseas player Jameel Stewart, who has been in prime form, and he simply blew Micklehurst away.  He reached 147*off 74 balls with 130 of those coming in boundaries.  Shaw reached the target with 22 overs to spare.

Ashton were looking to put a win on the board and began by visiting Friarmere.  The home side totalled 202-8, with skipper Ryan Heap putting in a good spell and finishing with 4-28 from 12 overs.  In reply his side got off to a poor start, and fell to 16-3.  There were good contributions from Danny Hawthorne, (34) and newcomer Aminullah Said, (41), but the Reyner Lane team fell 46 short.  Werneth made the short trip to Ashton on Sunday, and fell to 110-6 at which point Heap would have hoped to contain them to a reasonable target.  Ali Muzaffar, a regular run getter at the Coppice, staged a recovery, ending up with 64 and leaving Ashton 198 to win. A poor start put them on the back foot but Siraj Kadodia, making a welcome return to Reyner Lane this season, showed flashes of the promise he displayed before his break from the game.  He made 64 and together with Adnan Bashir, (26) gave Ashton a hope of victory.  It wasn’t to be as Andrew Walker ran through the lower order.  Hopes are high that pro Chami Edirisinghe will be available this week, which will be a real positive for Ashton as they face a trip to Uppermill this weekend.  In the other games on Saturday, Stayley visit Glodwick and Micklehurst go to Oldham.

In other Pennine League news there has been confirmation from the Greater Manchester League that formal  applications for membership from 2018 have been received from PCL clubs, Moorside; Royton; Shaw; Monton; Heyside; Greenfield and Glodwick.  There are suggestions that other Clubs which have not yet made a formal application are actively considering a similar move.  Together with the 5 clubs who will be moving to the Lancashire League this puts the future of the PCL in serious doubt.  PCL officials are continuing to work hard to establish a way forward, and meetings were due to be held this week.  Reporter Sport will continue to bring news of developments as they unfold.

By Martin Frost