Double trouble for toiling Rainhill
Wigan power to 56 run win
Wigan 135 (Adam Samouelle 39, Attiq Rehman 35*; Owen Groom 2-17)
Rainhill 79 (Philip Morgan 17, Sam Williamson 16*; Harry Jackman 4-19)
Wigan (23 pts) beat Rainhill (5 pts) by 56 runs
Wigan's 2nd team completed the double over Rainhill, following up their 114-run home victory in May with another convincing win at Victoria Terrace.
On this occasion Wigan were not so dominant and there were times when it appeared as if Rainhill were in control of the match. However, in the final analysis, Wigan were worthy winners and Rainhill can have few complaints at the outcome.
After winning toss and opting to bat in glorious sunshine, Wigan set out to build a formidable target. Openers Adam Samouelle and Daniel Yates, who have scored over 500 runs between them this season, showed their intentions early on. Samouelle launched the first ball of the match to the boundary rope and the pair put on 31 before Philip Morgan made the breakthrough when he found a way through to Yates' pads. The introduction of Oliver Powell into the attack created some problems for the visitors; he took the wickets of David Wood (3) and Harry Jackman (5), both of who were caught by Owen Groom. Groom's second catch, a terrific low take at point, was a fantastic effort that underlines this team's capability in the field.
Samouelle and Gareth Bradley avoided further loss of wicket until, with the score on 81 for 3, the opener was bowled by Sam Williamson for 39. Tom Gibbons suffered the same treatment with the next ball and walked back to the pavilion without scoring. Attiq Rehman survived the hat-trick ball but Bradley himself was out moments later when he too was bowled, this time by Owen Groom for 15. Groom followed this up by taking the wicket of Sam Fitzpatrick. Rainhill had taken four wickets for just two runs and, with the score at 83 for 7, looked very much in charge.
Rainhill failed to take their opportunities, however, and Rehman was determined to punish lax bowling or laspes of concentration in the field. With support from Jay Kunwar (13) he helped Wigan rally spiritedly, hitting an unbeaten 35 as the visitors reached 135 all out. Jack Ellis took two wickets and Gary Yates was run out as Rainhill took all five bowling points.
A target of 136 seemed more than achievable given the batting talent in this Rainhill team. They needed to get off to a good start but instead lost Luis Duffy quickly, bowled by Adam Samouelle with the third ball of the innings. In the next over Owen Groom was caught behind the stumps by David Wood for 4, and Rainhill were reduced to 5 for 2. Samouelle (4 for 36) and Daniel Yates (2 for 11) ripped through Rainhill's top order, with only Jack Ellis from the first five batsmen reaching double figures. Rainhill slumped to 42 for 7 and, while Philip Morgan (17) and Sam Williamson (16 not out) were able to lead something of a fightback, it never looked likely to be enough to haul the home side back into the game. Harry Jackman (4 for 19) saw off the bottom order as effectively as Samouelle had seen off the top and Rainhill's abortive chase stuttered to a close, reaching a total of 79 from 29.5 overs.
Photographs of the game can be found here.
Umpires: John Veacock, Scott Churchman
Scorers: David Crossley, Lynn Yates
Match ball sponsor: Black Swan Tax