Currie hits crucial runs for Lancashire

LANCASHIRE overcame the challenge of Leeds and Bradford Universities to gain a 71-run victory thanks to an efficient bowling display.

After two days of being severely tested, Red Rose team finally showed their superiority as they knocked the students over for 156.

The wickets were shared around, Steve Crook taking 3-51 and two a piece for Mahmood, Hogg and Schofield.

Despite the win coach Mike Watkinson feels more could have been gained from the match and he said: "I'm pleased for the lads that we won the game.

"But if we reflect on the first two days there were opportunities for players to stake a claim for first team cricket which some will be disappointed they didn't take."

One player who certainly took their chance was Mark Currie.

The young batsmen made 56 to add to his first innings 125. During the morning session he added a crucial 40 runs to the Lancashire total with last man Gary Keedy, setting a target of 228 for the students.

Watkinson was delighted with Currie's efforts: "Mark held the thing together and it was good to see.

"He added some important runs for the last wicket otherwise there may have been a target they could have chased."

Once the Universities side had been reduced to 52 for six a Lancashire win was inevitable, only being delayed by 47 from the Bradford captain James Duffy.

The Red Rose side are back in action on Sunday in the Totesport League when they take on table-toppers Glamorgan Dragons at Old Trafford.

Mal Loye will hope to return from injury and the match should provide plenty of fireworks from two strong batting sides.