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Worsley Cup semi-finals: Hawke sets up a Church date
CLASSY Joey Hawke picked the perfect time to find his form as his 70 paved the way for Lowerhouse’s march into a Foster’s Worsley Cup final at Church as they thrashed East Lancashire on Saturday.
And an explosive final 10 overs in the other semi-final saw Church blow Accrington away as they piled up the runs to set up a big win in the Hyndburn derby and earned the right to stage the final for the second year running.
Hawke’s knock gave Lowerhouse the edge as he helped his side to a tough total to chase at Alexandra Meadows – and they saw the job through to make just their third final.
East Lancashire were off the pace in the field in the early stages as the House were allowed to get off to a good start thanks to Ben Heap and Jonny Whitehead.
The pair shared a 69-run stand before Whitehead nicked Danny Chester onto his stumps for 26.
East Lancs then sensed it may have been their day when Jonathan Finch was out second ball as Ockert Erasmus dived and held a stunning catch in the covers as Finch smashed a Chester half-volley towards the boundary.
Heap was then caught well at slip by Mark Lomas off Erasmus and the Lowerhouse innings was in the balance with Hawke joining Francois Haasbroek in the middle.
Haasbroek was labouring with injury but played an anchor role while Hawke played his shots to keep the scoreboard ticking over.
After Haasbroek was bowled by Erasmus for 26 Chester picked up a couple more wickets before Joe Beneduce played an entertaining cameo at the end in support of Hawke who launched Erasmus into Corporation Park before holing out with the final ball of the innings for 70 as the House closed on 219-7.
East Lancs had their work cut out to chase down such a total and Mo Bhada, Erasmus and John Turner went cheaply to leave them in trouble.
Mudasser Panchbhaya (27), Ben Westhead (21) and Lomas (13) gave brief hope of a fightback but Lowerhouse refused to give an inch in the field as Fergus Bailey claimed the bowling plaudits with 4-27 as East Lancashire were finally all out for 132.
Church’s win at Accrington was spectacular they took an astonishing 108 runs from the final 10 overs to pile up 277-5.
Professional Saeed Anwar smashed his way to 93 from just 53 balls, while Sam Holt also played well for 55.
Levi Wolfenden and Lloyd aspin both hit 35 and Craig Fergusson made 22 in the run fest with David Ormerod – who had cut short a family holiday in Cornwall to return for the semi-final – suffering most in the late assault.
His last two overs went for 49 runs as his miserly figures turned messy thanks to Anwar’s assault.
Without Graham Lloyd, Accrington were always up against it but Ashar Zaidi’s 83 kept the game alive and Simon Hanson (27) and stand-in skipper Matt Wilson (26) also did their bit.
But Andrew Bentley claimed four wickets and Accrington collapsed from 183-5 to 188 all out as Church celebrated.
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