Only Sutton’s thirds were in action over the weekend, entertaining Newton in a fixture which was cancelled earlier in the season due to rain.
But with both now fighting for the West Lancashire League’s Beardsley Cup, and watched by an unusually raucous crowd, this game had plenty of spice.
After Saturday’s thunder storms, the pitch looked a little tricky but both captains hoped to bat. Home skipper, Alex Fitzgerald won the toss and Newton looked to set a competitive total.
Newton’s star batsman Liam Jenkins fell early to a smart catch at first slip from Lewis Bolton of Richard Norman’s bowling.
Catching would be the difference between the two sides
Peterson, Bhalla, Knowles and At all fell cheaply in an eight over spell, leaving the heart of Newton’s batting ripped out and leg spinner Tom Nolan (pictured, left) with figures of 4 for 33 in a season’s best performance ably assisted in the field, notably with a stunning catch in the deep by Jay Melling.
Newton ended 156 all out.
Sutton’s response was 22 for 2, but Adam Onion and Johnny Green steadied the ship, both ending 73 and 49 unbeaten respectively, secure the victory for Sutton.
Newton started brightly, reducing Sutton to 22 for 2, taking opener Scott and number 3 James York.
Sutton’s other opener, Adam Onion looked out of form to begin with and offered 2 chances. However, whereas Sutton had caught everything, both were spurned – and Onion would not offer a third chance. When joined by Jonny Green, he was the dominant force in the partnership that would win the game. Green showed none of his usual fluency but stuck around and allowed Onion to find his form – and soon the boundary, with regularity. Both ended undefeated on 73 and 49 respectively and Sutton took a hard fought victory and moved to the head of the cup table.
Both sides look stronger than all other opposition though, with only Preston looking likely to interfere, and it would be hard to rule out a return fixture in the final – which would be a repeat of last year when Newton took the honours