Superb team efforts helps 2nd XI to much-needed victory
Northop Hall 183-4 (Archie Sussex 47*, Evan Withe 47; Jack Lowrie 1-39) Rainhill 185-8 (Luis Duffy 47, Mark Viggars 31; Joshua Leach 4-40) Rainhill (20 pts) beat Northop Hall (9 pts) by 2 wickets
Rainhill’s 2nd XI won for the first time since their opening day victory over Old Xaverians, surprising fifth-placed Northop Hall by successfully chasing down a target of 184.
Rainhill won the toss and elected to field. David Pennington made an early breakthrough when he bowled opener Adam Littler for 11. Adam Edwards dismissed Gareth Fox for 13, but in the battle between bat and ball it was generally the batsmen who came off better. Alastair Andrady scored 36 before he was caught by Mark Viggars off the bowling of Jack Lowrie, while Evan Withe made a valuable contribution of 47 and looked set to record his first half-century of the summer before he was run out by Biley Banerjee. Archie Sussex (47 not out) and Jack Smallwood (22 not out) helped the home side to a total of 183 for 4.
Rainhill lost an early wicket in their pursuit of 184; Biley Banerjee hasn’t had a great deal of luck so far in 2021 and that continued when he was played a delivery from Harry Williams into the hands of Jack Smallwood. Luis Duffy and Owen Groom shared a partnership of 56 before Groom too was out, for 29, also caught by Smallwood – this time off the bowling of Nish Adke.
Rob McKeown looked in good form and raced to 24, but was run out by Liam Evans-Ford. Luis Duffy was in confident mood but, like Withe in Northop Hall’s innings, couldn’t get beyond 47. Joshua Leach struck to deny Duffy what would have been a thoroughly deserved half-century.
Leach took four wickets as he rattled through Rainhill’s middle order, but crucially the visitors were scoring runs and homing in on the target of 184. Mark Viggars pitched in with a useful 31. After the loss of the eighth wicket the match was very much in the balance, but Philip Morgan (15 not out) and Sam Williamson (1 not out) weathered sustained pressure to steer Rainhill home. Photo: Northop Hall CC