Fylde coast cricket review: Lytham’s last-day battle as Fylde escape and Thornton Cleveleys claim top spot

Steven Croft top-scored for Lytham in their heavy defeat
Steven Croft top-scored for Lytham in their heavy defeat

Lytham CC’s battle to avoid finishing in the bottom two of this season’s Liverpool Cricket Competition first XI ECB Premier League will go to the last game.

They remain bottom of the division, 12 points adrift of third-bottom Southport and Birkdale following a 170-run loss at Rainhill.

Having asked their hosts to bat first, Lytham saw Rainhill dismissed for 250 midway through the 88th over.

Openers Sean Vandome and Mike Rotheram laid the foundation, hitting 78 and 61 respectively.

Every Lytham player bar wicketkeeper Matthew Taaffe bowled at some point with Ryan Norris claiming 3-27.

In reply, Ben Saunders and Steven Croft took Lytham to 41-0 but the latter’s dismissal for 25 triggered a collapse.

All 10 wickets fell for 39 runs as Lytham were shot out for 80, Qaiser Ashraf taking 7-32.

If Lytham are to escape the bottom two, then it will mean getting a result against this year’s champions Bootle, who secured top spot on Saturday.

In the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield, Fylde avoided relegation on the final day as they beat Great Eccleston with Standish and New Longton finishing in the bottom two.

Fylde looked in trouble when they were all out for 76, Jim Procter taking 5-31, but they bowled out Great Eccleston for 68 thanks to Usama Abrar (5-12) and Anthony Ellison (4-38).

South Shore bowed out with a five-wicket win against Penwortham.

Matt Cowburn claimed 4-23 as Penwortham were all out for 112 before Nathan Bolus top-scored with 29 in taking South Shore to 113-5.

They will be joined next season by Fylde coast pair Thornton Cleveleys and Kirkham and Wesham as they claimed the top two spots in divison 1A.

Kirkham and Wesham had led the table on the final day but they were not in action.

Thornton Cleveleys leapfrogged them into top spot as they chased down Tarleton’s 218-7, replying with 223-2.

Norcross finished bottom after a 36-run loss against Rufford.

Ian Davies took 5-10 as Rufford were all out for 81, only for them to skittle Norcross for 45 as Joe Lyth claimed 4-6.