DARYN Smit won the battle of the century-making professionals as Ramsbottom beat Colne on the opening day of the Lancashire League season.

The prolific South African scored 116 with Colne sub-pro Swapnil Gugale also hitting a ton, but his 112 was not good to enough to stop the promoted Division Two champions slipping to a 13-run defeat.

Batting first, Ramsbottom posted 252-6 with Brad Fielding (36), Jacob Clarke (35no) and Keiren Grimshaw (34) all contributing.

Smit then did his bit with the ball, taking 6-56 – including the wicket of Gugale who was well supported by Chris Walton (41) and Lewis Rimmer (40) as Ramsbottom picked up the maximum 12 points in an entertaining Division One clash.

Champions Burnley enjoyed a routine seven-wicket victory at Rochdale where Fergus Bailey (4-16) and Bharat Tripathi (4-30) did the damage as the hosts were skittled out for 69.

In reply, Joey Marshall topped scored with an unbeaten 36 as Burnley sealed victory for the loss of three wickets.

Darwen enjoyed a seven-wicket victory over Crompton thanks to an unbeaten knock of 80 from Mark Friend.

Captain Scott Friend (40) and John Cordingley (39) both contributed to Darwen’s total.

Batting first, Crompton were dismissed for 180 with Dave Bowden taking 5-54.

Walsden, title winners in 2018, came out top against 2017 champions Clitheroe. Batting first, Clitheroe posted 180-8 with Jack Dewhurst top scoring with 55 while captain Peter Dibb finished unbeaten on 39.

In reply, Jack Hooson was the pick of the Walsden batting order, scoring 55.

Norden professional Ashar Zaidi produced a fine all-round display to help beat Lowerhouse.

He scored 68 not out in his side’s 222-4 total then took 5-29 to seal a 45-run victory – captain Ben Heap (30), Jonny Whitehead (25), Francois Haasbroek (29) and professional Stephen Parry (26) all produced decent but not match-winning knocks. Todmorden enjoyed an impressive win over Division Two runners-up Middleton.

Tod totalled 210-8 with opener Bilal Abbas top scoring with 52 with Chris Schofield (44), sub pro Neil Hornbuckle (38), Ben Sutcliffe (23) and Freddie Priestley (20) all doing their bit.

In reply, Middleton were restricted to 160-9.

In Division Two, the evergreen Keith Roscoe picked up his 1,800th wicket in the league – trapping Sam Finch lbw for 40 – as Rawtenstall beat East Lancs by seven wickets.

League new boys Greenmount got off to winning start thanks to a narrow seven-run win against Accrington.

The professionals were in fine batting form at Seedhill and Nelson’s Usman Tariq (106) – who also took 4-54 – got the better of Thikshila de Silva (123no) in a six-wicket victory.

Elsewhere, Church won their Hyndburn derby with Rishton by 10 runs, Enfield made a commanding 295-8 against Bacup who were bowled out for 233 and Littleborough beat Haslingden by four wickets.