Darwen's charge halted

First published in Sport

DARWEN’S charge at the top of the Chorley Building Society Northern League was halted by the rain on Saturday as the weather held the winning hand across the North West.

Jordan Clarke’s men, who have started the campaign with four wins from their four games, were hopeful of continuing their run with Kendal the visitors to Birch Hall.

However, heavy rain on Friday night and Saturday morning meant the game was called off before the scheduled start with the outfield unfit.

Chorley were also frustrated as their game with St Annes at Windsor Park was also a casualty.

However, spectators did manage to see some action in that game after a major mopping-up operation led to a start.

Chorley were put in after St Annes won the toss and their innings got off to the worst possible start at professional Mohammed Jamal was caught by Adam Holt off the bowling of Lukman Vahaluwala for a duck in the first over of the match.

Ian Dickinson also fell to the spin of former Rawtenstall and Accrington man Toby Bulcock for seven as he departed caught and bowled but the rain returned in the sixth over and that that that for the day.

The games between Fleetwood and Lancaster, Netherfield and Morecambe and Preston and Penrith were all abandoned without a ball being bowled, while there was a shock result on the Furness Peninsula as Barrow and Blackpool managed to beat the rain.

Barrow won the toss and chose to bat and had Blackpool at 9-2 before skipper Paul Danson dug in to make an excellent 40.

Alex Smith also made 35 while Steven Mercer hit 26 not out at the end as they managed to post 139-8 from their 50 overs.

Barrow were confident of knocking off that total - and were determined to recover from their loss to Darwen on Bank Holidat Monday.

And as they coasted to 56-1 with professional Kaustubh Pawer looking classy they were well on course.

But after Pawar fell for 45 Barrow collapsed in the face of a fine spell from Blackpool professional Christi Viljoen.

He claimed 7-26 from 21 overs and Richard Gleeson picked up 3-26 as title favourites Barrow slumped to 81 all out.

Chorley’s game at Blackpool in the ECB National Knockout Cup yesterday also fell victim to the rain with Stanley Park flooded.

That will now be played on May 25.

It wasn’t only the Ribblesdale League and Northern League hit by the weather.

A host of games in the Liverpool Competition were also off - but Lytham managed to beat Fleetwood Hesketh despite Darwen’s Lancashire starlet Alex Davies managing just four with the bat.

They coasted to a six-wicket win, however, chasing down 98 in just 16 overs.

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