CHORLEY’S hard work in mopping up Windsor Park paid a rich dividend on Saturday as they claimed just a third win of the Northern League season thanks to a clinical dispatching of Preston.
Chances of play seemed slim on Friday when the rain poured down – but the water was cleared and skipper Andrew Holdsworth had no hesitation in putting Preston in when he won the toss.
And that decision was rewarded Chris Harty removed Sajid Patel in the second over before Billy Smith sent Preston dangerman Lukman Vahaluwa packing in the thord as he claimed a caught and bowled.
Yasin Patel and Mohsin Mohdi both went for ducks and had it not been for Soaib Dukanwala and Saeed Nalaband Preston’s innings would have been over even quicker than it eventually was.
Dukanwala made 23 and Nalaband 17 and they were the only two men who made double figures as the Chorley bowlers were far too good on a testing surface with Smith claimed 4-23 and Harty 2-30.
But the star was Will Moulton, who claimed 3-4 as Preston sunk to 59 all out in 20 overs.
As Chorley replied Vahaluwala removed Holdsworth for four and there was a middle order wobble – but opener Jack Bentham was a model of sense as he made 24, although when he went they were 46-6 and in danger of suffering a shock loss.
But Kieran McCullagh and Alex Weetman steered Chorley over the line for their four-wicket win, Darwen were in the Lake District and given all the rain it was a shock their match at Netherfield actually started on time and skipper John Cordingley chose to bowl first at Parside Road and Chris Wade marked his 23rd birthday by removing Chris Parry in his third over before Niall Burke had Marc Brown caught the hosts were wobbling.
They reached 25-2 in the 12th over before the rain came down – and play was called off at 4pm.
Leyland enjoyed a remarkable day as they crushed St Annes at Vernon Road.
Luis Reece scored a superb 145 not out and professional Brett Pelser made 121 as the pair shared a second-wicket partnership of 233 as they launched an astonishing attack on the home bowling en-route to a 50-over total of 311-2.
St Annes have been struggling all season – and that target was never realistic for them and they were 78 all out with Reece rounding off the perfect day with 5-39.
Terry Hunte made 76 as Kendal beat Lancaster with ease in the only other game to finish at Lune Road.