GREAT Harwood missed a great chance to close the gap at the top of the Houldsworth Solicitors Ribblesdale League as they suffered a big defeat on a day when the rain hit the programme hard.
Leaders Clitheroe were one of the sides suffering at the hands of the weather as their game with Edenfield at Gincroft Lane was one of four abandoned.
But Paul Gaskell’s men could still enjoy their Saturday afternoon as news filtered through from The Cliffe that Great Harwood were turned over by unpredictable Settle.
Jack Edgar suffered his first failure with the bat since he moved to Harwood from Lowerhouse as his side suffered a false start.
More rain saw another three overs lost and that seemed to hit Harwood’s momentum as their innings never really got going.
Charlie Fernando was the top order batsman who bucked the trend as he made 33, while tail ender Stuart Maher also weighed in with 32 but Harwood were still bowled out for 100.
Maher then struck an early blow as Settle replied but Imran Khalid was in form and he struck an unbeaten 56 to see the Dalesmen over the line by nine wickets in just 16 overs.
Ribblesdale Wanderers maintained their momentum built up by the Ramsbottom Cup win as they beat Read by just one run in a match reduced to 20 overs a side.
Charlie Jackson’s men batted first and thrashed their way to 164-5.
For a while that didn’t seem as though it would be enough as Read appeared to be coasting to victory.
But Wanderers managed to pull it back with the ball and in the end Read closed on 163-7.
Cherry Tree’s good run continued as they kept up the pressure on Section B leaders Earby thanks to their win over Brinscall.
Brinscall were in the mood to cause an upset in the derby and claimed the prized scalp of home skipper Mark Hadfield early on in the 30-over contest.
But Marc Burrows (14), Ruan Sadler (25) and Amar Ullar (34) all made handy contributions to keep the scoreboard ticking over.
And Cherry Tree looked well set to push towards a score of 160 but they were pegged back by some fine bowling from Lee Burgess and Sam MacLachlan, who have been a real deadly double act in Brinscall’s first Senior League season.
Former Whalley man Burgess claimed 6-66 to move to 51 wickets for the season, while MacLachlan’s 4-54 took the left-armer beyond 40 victims.
Their efforts saw Cherry slip to 121 all out with seven balls remaining.
While that was below par, Sadler was in determined mood with the ball and struck early to remove Phil Lowe before sending back Zandre Cloete for just one.
Skipper Liam Winstanley was unfortunate to fall leg before for 17 and Brinscall were falling behind the rate as the clouds began to gather and rumbles of thunder were accompanied by flashes of lightning.
Eventually the rain came with six overs remaining and Brinscall on 76-6 and beaten on run-rate.
Cherry's hopes of promotion were also boosted by the result from Victory Park as Barnoldswick beat Salesbury in a 31-over game.
But Barlick had to fight back from being 39-4 to pile up 214-5.
That comeback was led by Umar Saddique, who made 92, while skipper Luke Hodgson was 77 not out at the close of the innings.
It was going to be a tall order for Salesbury and despite an impressive 74 from Scott Wharton they eventually closed on 181-9.
The games between Whalley and Baxenden, Padiham and Earby and Oswaldtwistle Immanuel and Brooksbottom were all rained off.