IT took a long time coming, but it was worth it in the end.
Chorley have been a Jekyll and Hyde team in the last couple of months, roaring into the quarter-finals of the National Knockout and playing superbly, while after a bright start to the league campaign, they have suffered a series of setbacks since their last win in mid-May.
However, Andy Holdsworth’s side finally recaptured some of their cup form in a league game on Saturday as they completed an ultimately convincing win over visitors Lancaster.
It was a game played in a somewhat surreal atmosphere.
Heavy downpours were predicted and rain fell throughout the morning – conditions which clearly dissuaded many spectators as the ground was almost deserted at the normal start time. Thankfully, the weather was not as bad as forecast and as the clouds cleared, the ground had dried out enough for a 33-over game to start at about 3.20pm.
There were still precious few people in the ground, a contrast to last week’s packed venue for the Bowdon cup tie, but the ones that were there saw a reasonably entertaining clash.
Pro Mohammed Jamal set Chorley on the way, but as in previous innings, he tried one big shot too many and fell for a lightning 51.
The skipper himself then took over, battling to 48 before holing out on the boundary to fall just short of a deserved half-century as he helped his side to 147 for 9.
It was still a reachable total despite the conditions, but the home side set about the Lancaster line-up with relish.
Joe Tiffin, who has only recently risen to the first-team ranks, claimed the notable wicket of the visitors’ New Zealand pro Michael Barry to put Chorley in charge.
Chris Harty then ripped through the middle order to bag his maiden first-team five-wicket haul, and the Windsor Park men completed a welcome win which hauls them back towards mid-table respectability.
Chorley, who travel to St Annes on Saturday, are still awaiting the identity of their National Knockout quarter-final opponents as the York v Chesterfield tie again fell victim to the weather on Sunday.
They will play the winners at home in a game provisionally scheduled for August 3.