OUTSTANDING Kiwi Jamie How smashed his second ton of the season in the second game of the season as Darwen were forced to dig deep to gain a Northern League draw at Kendal on Saturday.
The 30-year-old New Zealand Test man broke the Cumbrians’ batting record on the opening day as Kendal piled on the runs at Carnforth - and he was in glorious form again as the Towers looked for their first win.
Kendal won the toss and chose to bat and made a patient start before Donovan Du Plessis was castled by Niall Burke for 15 with the score on 31 in the 16th over.
But that brought How to the crease as he joined Jamie Heywood - and the pair set themselves for a long stay.
There was nothing flashy as they crept to 78-1 from 30 overs but the last 20 of the innings saw them step on the gas as they took the game away from the Towers in a 157-run stand for the second wicket.
Heywood was finally bowled by Neil Cordingley for 64 from 148 balls, while How passed his ton in style as he raced to 128 not out from just 100 deliveries.
Veteran Terry Hunte, 28 years on from first playing in England as professional at Nelson, made 15 and Kendal closed on 228-2 from their 50 overs with Darwen sub pro, last year’s paid man Mohamad Zaman Khan, suffering with the ball.
In damp conditions that sort of chase was always going to be tough for the Towers and when Scott Jackson went to his first ball in the second over and Zaman Khan departed cheaply, there were even more up against it.
Danny Fradd went for 14 and when Alex Davies was caught by Jack White off Nick Lewthwaite for 37 Darwen’s minds were on the draw.
That was even more so when six overs were lost to rain, especially as the target was unaffected.
Neil Cordingley (28) and Gareth Cordingley (27) led the resistance but Darwen were rocking on 134-8 with eight overs remaining.
However Burke and Nathan Jackson saw them through the nervy final overs for a couple of points.
Chorley recovered from their opening day hammering at the hands of Fleetwood as they claimed the lion’s share from a draw at St Annes.
Batting first, Chorley recovered from the loss of skipper Andy Holdsworth in the 10th over to post a more than testing 241-5 from 50 overs with Will Moulton smashing 50 from just 31 balls.
St Annes suffered the blow of losing Charles Boucher to a dislocated shoulder as he landed awkwardly in the field but they started well and passed 50 without loss until the brakes were applied and wickets started to fall.
Former Pakistan Test star Atiq uz-Zaman led the way for St Annes and made and excellent 109 but the home side closed on 199-6.