Weekend Review Greater Manchester Cricket League
Monday 21st August 2017 @ 11:19 by Mark Phillip

Dreadful weather saw the majority of games called off last weekend.  Of the 8 local Clubs in the GMCL pyramid only 2 got into action at senior level, and with the season rapidly drawing to a close the loss of the opportunity to get winning points was a disappointment to those Clubs harbouring title winning and promotion ambitions.

Premier Division

Denton St Lawrence went into the weekend in 3rd place, knowing that the two clubs above them, Flixton and Woodbank, were due to meet.  DSL failed to get into action, but in a low scoring reduced overs game at Flixton the home side came out on top as Woodbank failed by 38 runs to reach a target of 106.  The result left DSL moving into 2nd place, just 5 points adrift of Flixton.  They now face Clifton this weekend and will be hoping that Bury overcome Flixton.

Elsewhere Glossop, already doomed to the drop, saw their game at Roe Green washed out.  There was, however, action at Egerton, where Denton West were the visitors.  Conditions eventually allowed a 20 over game.  West posted an impressive 146-5, largely thanks to an unbeaten 6th wicket partnership of 76 between John Barnett and Mike Shum which enabled a recovery from 70-5.  In reply the West attack limited Egerton to 101, with the wickets shared around, and gave them victory by 45 runs.  The points left West in 7th spot, and a small cushion of 4 points above the relegation zone.  With 3 games left it is vital that they pick up at least another victory to be assured of Premier Division status in 2018.  The game this weekend against Walshaw, who themselves are in a virtually identical position, therefore assumes great importance.  West then finish off the season with fixtures against DSL and Roe Green.

Division 1

Only Dukinfield of the local teams played over the weekend, and their win at Woodhouses left them comfortably in mid table. A consistent upper order display from Dukinfield saw them reach 162-3 in a game reduced to 30 overs a side.  A dash for runs in the last 5 overs ended with 6 wickets falling for the addition of another 25 runs.  Karl Mayne top scored with 54.  The Woodhouses reply got off well and at 110-1 with 10 overs left the home team slight favourites, but tight bowling from pro Yohan de Silva, (4-37), aided by a couple of run outs saw Dukinfield take the honours by 18 runs as Woodhouses finished on 169 all out.

Flowery Field were thwarted by the weather yet again.  They now lie 5th, two points off the promotion spots, and have had more games abandoned than the Clubs above them.  They finish their campaign with home fixtures against Woodhouses and Winton, before a trip to Unsworth on the last day.  They will be looking for maximum points and hoping that those above them falter, as they look to play Premier Division cricket in 2018.

Freed from the spectre of relegation, (following the recent GMCL announcment that there will be no relegation other than from the Premier Division this season), Denton failed to get underway against Stand and will be looking to use the final three games of the campaign to develop more consistency after a season which has seen a number of wins interspersed with below par performances.

Division 2

At the time of writing there was no confirmation as to whether Droylsden’s home game with Edenfield went ahead.  The Oakfield team have only a slim chance of featuring in the promotion shake up.  It is looking increasingly likely that Astley & Tyldesley will take the title honours.

Division 4 East

Ashton Ladysmith made a fruitless trip to Unsworth 2nd XI as conditions prevented play.

By Martin Frost