Lowerhouse keep pressure up at the top, and Burnley up to sixth

KEY INNINGS: Lowerhouse professional Francois Haasbroek on his way to 46 against Nelson on Sunday
KEY INNINGS: Lowerhouse professional Francois Haasbroek on his way to 46 against Nelson on Sunday

Champions Lowerhouse took maximum points from their mini-derby at home to Nelson on Sunday to remain third in the Lancashire League.

And the status quo remains, following 12-point victories for leaders Accrington and Ramsbottom.

After a rare day off on Saturday, Lowerhouse entertained Nelson on Sunday at the Neville Gee (Recriutment) Ground.

Historically the men from Seedhill have been the ‘House’s nemesis.

They hold a 19 to 1 Worsley Cup advantage alone, so this was never a league fixture to take lightly.

Lowerhouse won the toss,and perhaps mistakenly, on a wicket that got progressively better for batting,followed their usual formula of batting first.

They were in some trouble at 35-3, with the returning prodigal son Max Howells taking the ever-important wicket of Jonny Whitehead.

Professional Francois Haasbroek(46)and Joe Martin(23) steadied the Lowerhouse ship, but they went to successive balls at 117.

It was 127-6 when the increasingly consistent Joe Hawke and the league’s best number eight Chris Bleazard came together.

They took over the game with a 92-run partnership and both reached half-centuries as the ‘House finished on 250-8.

An unfortunate feature of the innings from the Nelson point of view was a total of 50 extras, with 40 of them wides.

Nelson’s reply started well with Lowerhouse also a victim of the wides’ virus, though they did restrict their total to a mere 20.

Nelson had scored 47-0 off 10 overs when Matt Walker, who would also go on to take two fine catches, took three quick wickets, including the Nelson paid man Ryan Canning

Although the task was now beyond them, Nelson bravely fought to the last man and it was down to the final over when they were 203 all out and all12 points were in the bag.

Sean Lemon(31) and Tyler McGladdery(30) top-scored for the visitors, but one point was scant reward for their efforts.

As well as Walker’s 3-26, Hassbroek had 3-67 and Paddy Martin continued in the wickets with 4-66.

This weekend, Lowerhouse are at Enfield on Saturday on the first fixed replay date, and on Sunday they travel to Colne.

Lowerhouse don’t start their Twenty 20 campaign until a week on Friday, when they open their Group C fixtures with a home clash with Nelson.

Burnley also picked up 12 points on Sunday as Colne visited Turf Moor, with the sun making a rare appearance.

The visitors won the toss and elected to bat on a good, hard deck.

Graham Lalor (1-19 off nine overs) and professional Adnan Rasool (2-31) kept a tight rein on the scorin,g with only 51-2 coming off the first 25 overs.

The pressure was relentless, and young Cole Hayman bowled very quickly in taking 1-19 on his return, but it was the introduction of Michael Kelly, who took the bowling honours with 5-35 off only seven overs, who had the biggest impact, helping bowl the visitors out for 135.

In reply, Burnley sped to 54-2 off nine overs, with Chris Burton scoring a quick scoring 28, Qasim Ali a hard-hitting 51 and Dan Pickup 19.

They were the backbone of the innings and were very aggressive against the Colne professional Shadley Schalkwyk, who went for 51 in seven overs.

Burnley won in 24 overs with five wickets down, and had a nice early finish for the Bank Holiday weekend.

The win left Bharat Tripathi’s side in sixth place in the table, level with Nelson on 31 points.

This weekend Burnley are on their travels, with the start of the Twenty20 on Friday night at Nelson (6-15 p.m. start), followed by a trip to Rishton on Saturday, and a home game against Nelson on Sunday.