Bad luck continues as rain stops play
Oliver Powell takes 5 for 27 before weather intervenes
Sefton Park PF 138 (Harry Wright 33, Mark Boyns 19*; Oliver Powell 5-27)
Rainhill 80-4 (Liam Yate 34, Panchu Xavier 16*; James Milburn 3-37)
No decision. Rainhill 6 pts, Sefton Park PF 5 pts
The 2021 season has been characterised by bad luck as far as the 3rd team are concerned. Without a win in spite of strong performances and near misses, at times falling just short, Rainhill again played well on Sunday only to be denied the opportunity to finish their run chase by the weather.
Sefton Park won the toss and opted to bat. The opening pairing of Phil McLoughlin and Harry Wright got out of the blocks well and put on 29 before the former fell victim to Paul Millar's pace bowling, out lbw, for 16. Wright and James Hague then helped to move the score onto 48 before an inspirational spell of bowling from Oliver Powell turned the innings around. He ripped through Sefton Park's middle order, with only Mark Ewing (16) and Jake Lord (18) able to offer meaningful resistance, to finish with figures of 5 for 27. It was his first five-wicket haul and underlines his potential as a leading attack bowler.
Wright battled on, reaching 33 before becoming Sam Addy's first victim of the day. With the score on 112 for 8, the Sefton Park tail found its wag and - thanks mainly to an unbeaten 19 from Mark Boyns - was able to press on and reach a total of 138 all out. Addy took the final two wickets and finished with 3 for 9, his best figures so far this season.
Faced with a moderate target, Rainhill raced to 80 from 17.2 overs at which point heavy rain led to the abandonment of play. Liam Yate had scored 34 from 29 balls in pursuit of victory and, in spite of losing four wickets (Sefton Park's James Milburn bowled effectively to take 3 for 37), Rainhill were well placed to pick up a much needed win. Ste Pennington and Panchu Xavier's partnership had already put on 20 runs and Xavier was scoring quickly. At the time play stopped Rainhill certainly had the advantage.
Nothing is ever guaranteed in cricket and it is perfectly possible that Sefton Park could have pulled themselves back into the game with a couple of wickets. However, once again Rainhill are left to curse their luck at not having had the opportunity to play out the match.
As with previous matches, there were stand-out performances: the bowling exploits of Powell and Addy, as well as Yate's powerful batting, will give the team some positives to work with.
Umpires: Matt Yorke, Dave Smith
Scorers: Dave Crossley, Saul Marks