Rose plants new record as Bootle beat Formby
FIRWOOD BOOTLE skipper Neil Williams was delighted as his young side overcame Formby by six wickets in Group B on Saturday.
The side he took to Cricket Path included 13-year-old Jaden Rose – the youngest player ever to feature for the Bootle first XI – as well as 19-year-old Lancashire prospect Jack Morley on his debut.
And Morley proved to be the star of the show, taking 4/10 with his left-arm spin to restrict the hosts to 107, then helping his side over the line with an unbeaten 31.
Williams said: “I got a bit of stick for winning the toss and bowling, but I thought it was our best opportunity to win the game.
“It looked like a wicket that would take some spin, and we’ve won the game with our spin attack there.
“Jack’s come in on his debut and bowled absolutely fantastically.
“We were really quite confident that we were going to take some wickets in the middle overs, and that’s what happened.”
After a sedate start to the game, Will
Hale’s one-handed grab to see off James Seward seemed to spark the visitors into life, and set some hares runing in the hosts’ minds.
Seven of the Formby batsmen fell to catches in front of the wicket as Morley and Daniel Davies slammed on the brakes in the middle overs – Elliot Ketteringham and his team didn’t know whether to stick or twist, and ended up unable to do either.
In reply, Ben Aitchison produced a fiery nine-over spell after making his first class debut for Derbyshire the previous weekend, and Formby’s bowlers probably drew more edges than Bootle’s. But the lack of runs on the board meant the slip cordon was understocked and there was no-one there to catch them.
After Hale and Vishal Tripathi compiled an opening stand of 53, the visitors lost four wickets for 14, including a stunning flying catch by Sam Oldham at cover to remove Tripathi.
But the total was still in reach, and the issue settled shortly after Williams joined Morley in the middle.
“I got a lot of stick for my first-baller last week, and the lads didn’t let me forget that,” Williams said.
“We have been known to lose wickets in clusters, which is something we’re well aware of and we’re trying to improve on.”
Group B has now featured four away wins, and one for each of its high-quality
Premier Division sides.
Northern’s Chris Laker finished unbeaten on 61 in their 203/6 at Ormskirk – Tom Sephton tweaked the new ball to great effect, taking 4/11 to hole the hosts’ reply below the waterline and set up a 110-run victory.
The day’s closest game came in Group D, where St Helens Town’s last pair crept over the line against Rainhill.
It was closer than it should have been, after the hosts reached 92/1 chasing 124, but James Clarke’s 4/17 almost pulled off a sensational comeback.
Earlier, Town’s Daniel Roberts had wrapped up the visitors’ innings by taking 4/11 in just 21 balls.
Elsewhere in the group, Matthew Hurst top-scored with 51 in Newton-leWillows’ 67-run win over Rainford.
Liam Naylor – signed by Liverpool after playing for Scotland in the U19 World Cup over the winter – took 5/33 to wrap up an 82-run win over Old Xaverians in Group E. Aaron Bleakley’s 51 had helped set up a target of 171.
The other city derby saw a sevenwicket win for Sefton Park over Wavertree – Robert Supria’s 60 made short work of the chase, after no fewer than seven visiting bowlers had taken a wicket to dismiss the hosts for 175.
Spare a thought for Naylor’s old club, Alder, in Group C, who have lost twice despite taking 20 wickets for just 193 runs.
Hightown St Mary’s only managed 98 on Saturday, but the West Derby side – forced to play their home games away for the time being due to a fallen tree – slipped from 74/3 to 89 all out.
In the same group, Maghull’s Anthony Molloy struck an unbeaten 71 to anchor their successful chase of 206 against Sutton.
In Group A, Southport Trinity’s Mark Prince took 6/29 to dismiss Southport & Birkdale for 144 at Trafalgar Road – but the visitors fell 18 runs short.
Ainsdale made it two wins from two against Fleetwood Hesketh.
They had to do it the hard way after an opening burst from Steve Gregory reduced them to 25/4, but some lower order resistence helped them to 198/9. By contrast, Hesketh made it to 104/3 but lost their last seven wickets for 19 runs.
On the Wirral in Group F, New Brighton’s Mark Rowland played the innings of the day, making 125 from 112 balls to help his side to 274 against Birkenhead Park; Sebastian Botes took 5/42 as the visitors struggled to keep up with the rate, eventually falling 80 short.
Wallasey made it two wins from two, skittling Caldy for 93 thanks to Khalid Wahbi’s 4/20 then knocking off the runs with seven wickets to spare.
Wigan’s Charles Taylor and John Richardson put on 137 as they beat Orrell Red Triangle by eight wickets.
Bootle in action against Northern