17 September 2020
Thornham 1st XI are one win away from winning Division E thanks to a thumping 10 wicket win at Rochdale Road.
Stand in Captain Scott Howarth won the toss and elected to bowl on a wicket that was green, damp and likely to offer assistance. The bowlers backed up that decision, especially Chris Heywood who removed both openers Flaxman and Lord early, the latter being caught superbly by wicketkeeper Ged Walsh. What followed was remarkable from the 26 year old left arm spinner, bowling rhythmically and removing the Clifton batsman with ease. Heywood was twice on a hat-trick ball with one nearly claimed as the batsman edged it just short of the cordon. Career best figures of 7-10 were completed when Heywood had Barton caught at 3rd slip by Harrop. Clifton were bowled out for 45 from 15.4 overs.
The chase didn’t take long as openers Tom Smith and Matt Mansfield took a liking to the bowlers. Smith in particular was impressive, manoeuvring the ball around the park in a quick fire 25. The runs were knocked off inside the 15th over giving Thornham a 6 point win.
The second team didn’t have any joy as they travelled to Ashton on Saturday. Having won the toss Captain Alec McClure elected to bat and that decision seemed to have been the correct call with the visitors reaching 50 before the loss of the first wicket. The departure of Iqbal and McClure sparked a massive collapse as Thornham were bowled out for 82, Paddy McMahon the only other batsman to make it into double figures with 15.
Defending a low score meant early wickets were needed and both Riley and Young stepped up, removing both openers with the score on 21. Young got another and at 41/3 on a wicket that was turning the impossible may have become possible but a partnership of 35 ended all hopes for Thornham, the home side knocking off the score inside the 25th over.
Sunday saw the Third team host Milnrow at Rochdale Road. The away side batted first and some fine bowling from Rauf, Canavan, Asif and Adnan restricted the visitors to 122-7 after 40 overs. David Bebb top scored for Milnrow with 42, the regular First XI Captain showcasing his class.
The second innings didn’t started well for the home side as last weeks half centurion Sarfraz was dismissed early on. Iqbal battled through some tough spells to top score with 35. The home side were in control of the game whilst Iqbal and Adnan were batting but both departed and this brought Milnrow back into the game. A tense finale made it until the last over and with 10 needed the away side picked up the final wicket. A great game played in fantastic spirit with Thornham again falling just short.
Next weekend sees the first XI final home game of the 2020 season as we welcome Prestwich 2nd team to Rochdale Road. The seconds are away at Springhead whilst the 3rds travel to Royton on Sunday. All games start at 12.30.