DESPITE losing by four runs to Bootle in the most agonising fashion, Rainford were celebrating on Saturday night, having earned sufficient bonus points to ensure that Liverpool Competition Premier Division Cricket will be back at the Jubilee Recreation Ground next year.
Bootle posted a competitive total of 205, with Andrew Pickavance taking 6-49 in an excellent spell.
In reply, Tom Meredith (62) and Pravin Tambe (38) led the pursuit, and, as wickets fell, Dave Tully (30) and John R Williams (31) looked to be taking Rainford to victory.
However, Williams was then lbw with the score on 200-8, and Ravi Mistry was then also given out lbw the very next ball.
Last man Andy Davies was out caught going for a big hit with just one more run added, leaving Rainford 201 all out.
“It’s not often we would be happy after a collapse like that,” said chairman John Williams, “but it’s the bigger picture that matters.
“We’ve learnt a lot from our first season in the top flight, and just for the moment are absolutely delighted that we are staying there.”
The second X1 annihilated St Helens Recs, winning by 10 wickets after bowling them out for 44. Steve Murgatroyd was on fire with 6-14 and Phil Curran gave support with 3-10.
l ORRELL chose to bat against promotion-chasing Rainhill, declaring on 239-8 from 68 overs.
With limited overs, Rainhill had to chase from ball one, which caused some batsmen to sacrifice timing for aggression.
Edmundson (38), Ford (32) and Rotheram (29) all got a start, but none went on to a match-winning score.
Rainhill managed to get to 207-9 before the overs ran out. Unlikely as it may be, Rainhill can still mathematically be promoted, but it is now out of their hands.
Rainhill’s second team lost by 54 runs to Birkenhead, after they were bowled out for just 57, chasing 112 to win.