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Cottam hails his Lowerhouse heroes
8:14am Tuesday 11th September 2012 in Sport
CHAMPAGNE-soaked skipper Charlie Cottam hailed his Lowerhouse battling brothers after Paddy and Joe Martin kept their heads to steer the reigning champions to the double.
Nerves were on edge after wickets tumbled with Lowerhouse facing the very real prospect of defeat at the hands of Ramsbottom.
The Martin brothers came together at the crease with the score on 136-8 and they needed 17 runs to reach 153 and the five bonus points needed to pip Accrington to the crown.
Not only did they manage that, but they took the House home in the final over to spark celebrations that ran long into Monday morning.
Paddy (20) finished on 12 not out with Joe (18) unbeaten on six and their 29-run stand left Cottam full of praise for their bottle as they held their nerve at the crucial time.
“I’ve been around a bit and I was feeling the pressure out there so how they coped at the end I don’t know,” said Cottam.
“They were brilliant, they were amazing to hold their nerve.
“It means so much for everyone – but those lads, the heart and the bottle they showed to get us over the line at the end in front of such a massive crowd was outstanding.”
Lowerhouse are the first side to win the double since Accrington did it in 2008 – but it went right down to the wire with Graham Lloyd’s men taking the mantle of ‘clubhouse leaders’ after they wrapped up their win over Burnley.
But the Martin brothers took Lowerhouse home as they celebrated their 150th anniversary in the best possible way.
“We are all chuffed to bits,” added Cottam. “It is hard to go out and defend a title and some people thought we couldn’t do it.”