Lostock recovered from their opening-day mauling by Little Lever to impressively get back on the horse in the Anthony Axford North West Cricket League’s Premiership, winning by seven wickets at Farnworth on Saturday.

Lostock were bowled out for 34 in defeat to the champions last weekend, but they were thankful for a captain’s performance from James Evans. He claimed four wickets to help bowl Farnworth out for 192 before hitting 27 opening the batting.

Evans shared a settling 51 for the first wicket with Matt Lamb, who hit 53 not out in a victory sealed with 15 overs remaining for last year’s second-placed finishers. Substitute professional Ankit Sharma top-scored with 54.

On the other side of the Farnworth divide, Padiham also bounced back from an opening-day defeat, winning at Social Circle by eight wickets chasing 106 inside 22 overs.

Pro Jack Edgar had an excellent day. He claimed three wickets with the new ball and hit an unbeaten 57 opening the batting.

Champions Little Lever won their second successive match, owing much to Adil Nisar’s 101no opening the batting, chasing 204 at home to Eagley, who they beat by eight wickets.

Curtis Anderton’s four wickets with spin was the standout performance in Eagley’s 205-7 from 45 overs. Nisar then underpinned the chase with five sixes in 97 balls.

Heading down into the Championship, one of the day’s eye-catching games saw hosts Brinscall beat Oswaldtwistle Immanuel (139-7) by two wickets chasing 139.

Adding weight to the theory low-scoring games are always the best, captain Sam Maclachlan claimed two wickets for Brinscall, who then had to recover from 24-4 thanks to an excellent 70 from South African overseas amateur, Divon Van Tonder.

Still, when he fell at 114-8, Brinscall, who have now won one and lost one, had work to do.

But 18no off 11 balls from number nine Dinusha Jayasekara saw them home in the 42nd over.

The day’s individual performance went to Baxenden’s Australian overseas amateur Blair Walsh, the Perth native crashing 10 sixes in 166 off 104 balls from number three as they posted 275-9 at Feniscowles and won by 127 runs.

Haris Masood struck four times in Feniscowles’ 148 all out.

Back to the Premiership, and Blackrod, Kearsley and Salesbury all claimed their second wins in as many matches.

Blackrod won by seven wickets in the penultimate over chasing 240 at Astley Bridge (239-6).

Astley Bridge pro Alexander Kok’s blistering 109 off 67 balls, with nine sixes, went unrewarded as his opposite number, the Sri Lankan opener Navod Paranavithana, led a comfortable chase with a well-paced 102 off 113.

Kearsley won an enthralling affair at home to Ribblesdale Wanderers, by three wickets chasing 200.

Wanderers made 199-9. Naveed Gondal claimed a new-ball 5-43 and Bajan overseas amateur, Kevon Beckles, hit 95.

In reply, Kearsley raced out of the blocks. South African overseas amateur Byron Giraudeaux played the standout innings, 92 off 60 balls, and shared an opening stand of 104 with captain Cameron Murray. But they later slipped to 174-7 before creeping over the line.

Early leaders Salesbury beat Tonge (142) by five wickets at home. Josh Bristol’s spin accounted for 5-35 before Salesbury’s Australian overseas amateur, Brandon Faber, top-scored with a measured 60.

In the Championship, Atherton lead the embryonic table having won two from two. They won at home, by seven wickets, against Barnoldswick (156 all out).

It was a Bajan takeover for Atherton. Their overseas amateur Jamaine Bullen took the new ball and claimed four wickets and then hit 51 in reply. He shared 105 for the third wicket, from 33-2, with pro Shayne Moseley, who opened and top-scored with 87no.

Hosts Cherry Tree beat Walkden by 35 runs defending a 171 target in their first league match of 2024.

South African pro Mickey Copeland had an excellent debut with 36 in 170 all out before returning 6-39 with his off-spinners as Walkden were bowled out for 135. Cherry Tree, for whom Mark Hadfield top-scored with 52, survived a collapse from 144-4.

Read, meanwhile, are on Atherton’s coat-tails having won their second game, away at Earby on the back of their 183-9, including South African pro Blayde Capell’s unbeaten 92. Nizam Vaid then struck three times in Earby’s 98 all out, an 85-run victory margin.