Procter stars with bat and ball in Rainhill win over New Brighton
Rainhill Cricket Club, who started the season with two impressive wins before slipping to a couple of surprise defeats, seem to be back on track and renewing their challenge for the Love Lane Liverpool Competition premier division title.
They followed their previous week's success over table-toppers Northern by demolishing New Brighton by eight wickets at Rake Lane on Saturday and establishing fifth spot in the table on 112 points as the campaign closes in on the half-way stage.
Rainhill still trail Northern by no fewer than 70 points but are on the shirt-tails of Leigh (139 points) Formby (136) and Ormskirk (120) and while it looks a daunting task to pip their rivals at the post, it is far from impossible.
Victory over the Seasiders was achieved as a result of teamwork and no one encapsulated that more than all-rounder Procter who grabbed 5-47 and then hit 38 in an unbeaten partnership with Kershaw (53).
Rotheram (44) also contributed a valuable knock which enabled the visitors to reach 182-2 in reply to New Brighton's 181 and pick up 25 points in the process.
Newton-le-Willows camea cropper in their top of the table clash against Highfield but it was a close run affair at Crow Lane East.
The hosts, batting first, posted a challenging total of 195 (Patel 65. Walkden 45) but in a nerve-tingling finish the Wigan outfit crossed the winning line with their last pair at the crease and increased their lead at the top of the table to 33 points.
St Helens Town earned a much-needed win at Ruskin Drive against Liverpool.
The local lads, who took first knock, hammered 194 (Antoine 75, J.M. Davies 26, Wood, D.Gaskell 23) and then dismissed the visitors for 141 (L.Gaskell 4-19, J.M. Davies 4-34).
Rainford's hopes of climbing the table were brushed aside at Ainsdale after the home side, batting first, blasted 207-6 declared and despite 32 from Shuttleworth, the Ruskin Drive side were pavilion-bound for 118.
In division two, Sutton lost by 37 runs at Southport Trinity where the home side posted a total of 155 (Cowley 4-46, Oldfield 4-68) and then dismissed the New Street boys for 118.
Second XI results involving local teams - premier division: Newton-le-Willows 69 all out Liverpool 76-1. Division one: Spring View 120 Rainford 121-4, Rainhill 119 all out Leigh 123-4.
Division two: Caldy 68 all out St Helens Town 70-2, Highfield 194-7 declared Sutton 197-3.
First XI fixtures for Saturday - premier division: Leigh v Northern, Orrell Red Triangle v New Brighton, Rainhill v Southport and Birkdale, Sefton Park v Bootle, Wallasey v Formby, Wigan v Ormskirk.
Division one: Fleetwood Hesketh v Colwyn Bay, Highfield v Ainsdale, Liverpool v Rainford, Lytham v Northop Hall, Newton-le-Willows v Birkenhead Park, Old Xaverians v St Helens Town.
Division two: Alder v Prestatyn, Maghull v Caldy, Norley Hall v Spring View, Sutton v Hightown St Mary's, Wavertree v Parkfield Liscard.
Second XI fixtures - premier division: Bootle v Sefton Park, Formby v Newton-le-Willows, New Brighton v Liverpool, Northern v Wallasey, Ormskirk v Lytham, Southport and Birkdale v Orrell Red Triangle.
First division: Ainsdale v Leigh, Birkenhead Park v Highfield, Colwyn Bay v Wavertree, Northop Hall v Wigan, Rainford v Old Xaverians, Spring View v Rainhill.
Second division: Caldy v Norley Hall, Hightown St Mary's v Southport Trinity, Parkfield Liscard v ,Fleetwood Hesketh, Prestatyn v Alder, St Helens Town v Maghull.