BIG Bash star Michael Neser wrote his name into Todmorden’s record books on Saturday – just a matter of hours after being called up for the Australia A team.
Neser will board an aircraft home this morning after his call to international duty meaning he will miss the remainder of the Foster’s Lancashire League season.
But he goes home as the holder of the Centre Vale club’s batting record after a stunning knock at Rawtenstall.
The 24-year-old, who only arrived back in England in the early hours of Saturday after a short break in Portugal, smashed a sensational 191 in the game to beat Tushar Arothe’s 12-year-old club record – and he was only 10 runs short of setting a new league mark.
Remarkably Neser, whose explosive hitting saw four balls lost, departed with 15 overs of the first innings left – but by then he had done the damage with his 107-minute stay at the crease.
He faced just 92 balls and hit 23 fours and 13 sixes, including two that cleared the Ilex Mill on Bacup Road.
All the bowlers suffered at Neser’s hands as Keith Roscoe, who ran through the tail to finish with four wickets, saw his 12 overs smashed for 114 – but his final four, after the departure of Neser, went for just 10 runs.
Todmorden closed on 335 all out and Rawtenstall knew a miracle was needed to get close, especially after Sam Kershaw ran out Vinny Hanson before the skipper had faced a ball.
Kershaw atoned for that with a half-century, while Cameron Holder made 42 and George Bevan hit 38 as Rocky were finally all out for 196, a score that would win many games.
Ramsbottom professional Darryn Smit claimed six wickets as his side brushed Rishton aside in brutal fashion at Acre Bottom, while leaders Lowerhouse were equally dismissive of East Lancashire at Alexandra Meadows.
Paddy Martin claimed five wickets as East Lancashire collapsed from 78-0 to 133 all out and despite a few scares for Lowerhouse they got home with relative ease.
Church beat Nelson at West End with Usman Tariq doing most of the damage with the ball as he claimed five wickets, while Chris Holt enjoyed a glorious day as Burnley beat Bacup.
Holt claimed six wickets and finished unbeaten on 98 as his side got home by six wickets.
Earlier veteran Peter Killelea and pro Haseeb Azam both hit half-centuries.
Ockert Erasmus made 59 and then claimed four wickets as Accrington beat Colne, while the game of the day was a thriller at Dill Hall Lane.
Third-placed Enfield came out on top against fourth-placed Haslingden in a tight finish.
Graham Knowles made 54 and Brenton Parchment 38 as Haslingden were bowled out for 183 in 48.1 overs with Simon O’Loughlin claiming four wickets.
Greg Jones (36) and Liam Bedford (32) gave Enfield the perfect start as they replied but the game was ebbing and flowing and in the end it took Hassan Fazal’s 27 to edge them over the line with three wickets in hand and eight balls to spare