First Division - Southport promoted after win against Recs
Monday 25th August 2003

Southport and Birkdale's five wicket win against St Helens Recs today guaranteed their promotion, even though they have to wait to be proclaimed as champions. That could happen next week if they beat second placed Sefton Park, who are the visitors to Trafalgar Road.

Recs batted for four and a quarter hours and 70.4 overs at Southport before being finally dismissed for 150, Barrington Rowland (41), Vinny Wood (26), Shaun Anders (21), Nilesh Kulkarni bowling 30.4 overs in taking 8-49.

The Sandgrounders were shaking at 97-5 (Whelan 32) but Graham Standring (55*) and Kulkarni (29*) added 54* for the sixth wicket, Steve Garvey taking 3-59.

Sefton Park picked up 24 pts at Aigburth against Liverpool. Being asked to bat by Steve Nealey, Ben Moore (69, 132 balls, 9x4s, 1x6) and Vinayak Mane (57, 67 balls, 8x4s, 1x6) opened with 120 in 26 overs. Paul Horton added 27 and Ian Fielding (33*) in a declared 212-4 after 50 overs. 

Liverpool were unable to start any steady partnerships against the bowling of Mane (4-41) and Howard Parker (3-28), subsiding to 124 from 42.4 overs.

Third place Fleetwood Hesketh fell further behind Sefton Park after a defeat at St Helens. Sanjay Pandey bowled unchanged for 22 overs for Saints, taking 9-59 whilst Neil Rimmer scored 43 and Peter Appleton 25 for Fleetwood.

St Helens fell to 83-6, Ian Lawless (27), Pandey (20) before Adam Friar (28*) and Darren Tyms (18*) added 50* to guarantee a four wicket win with Abey Kuruvilla taking 4-45 in 24 overs.

Hightown draw level on points (335) with Fleetwood Hesketh after their win at Formby. Electing to bat, Ian Sutcliffe (114) and Guy Edwards (41) put on 135 for the first wicket as Hightown went on to 237-7d in 49 overs with James Marshall taking 5-69.

Marshall and Graeme Morris continued their successful opening partnership with 86 before Morris was out for 51. Marshall went for 94 but it was thanks to Mike Simpson (22*) that Formby managed to reach 194 in the 58th over, Sunil Joshi taking 6-59.

Caldy ran Colwyn Bay to a close finish at Paton Field. The Welsh side declared at 201-6 after 48 overs, David Watkins (51*), Charlie Clubb (45), Huw Roberts (42) with Richard Battersby (3-66).

Losing half their wickets for less than 100, Caldy rallied through Darren Groves (69*) and Jason Cooper (20) to finish a disappointing four runs short at 197 after 49 overs, after Gareth Edwards had taken 4-69, Patrick Leach (3-33) and Paul Jenkins (3-37).

Highfield gained their eleventh win of the season, this time at Orrell Red Triangle who batted 61.3 overs for 133, Dean Chisnall (48), Stephen Peet (5-49) and Simon Mollitt (4-52). Losing seven wickets on their way, Craig Heaton (38*), Michael Farrell (28) and Neil Melling (22) took Highfield to 134-7 in 39.4 overs, Graham Hurst (3-47).

Worsley made the trip along the East Lancashire Road to meet a Haydock side without Jimmy Adams and almost clinched a win.

Haydock chose to bat first, reaching 180 from 56.2 overs, Sean Latham (57), Danny Rimmer (29), Craig Sackfield (27), Craig Gardiner (23), Dane Adams (4-45).

Worsley came close to pulling off their second win of the season but their last wicket fell two runs short of Haydock's total with four balls remaining, Tom Brogan (56), Tony Fare (28), Niall Howarth (27) and Martin Clark (3-14).