Cricket weather at last over the weekend saw Glossop 1st XI take top spot in the LCL first division with a win on Saturday against near-neighbours Flowery Field. Home skipper Will Hargreaves won the toss and chose to bat in warm sunshine. Openers Pennington and Dale wasted no time in putting on a 50 opening stand but when the former chipped a catch to square leg the scoring rate slowed as youngsters Will Coates, Matt Sonczak & George Dyson settled into life in the first team. Pro Lee Dale survived several chances to reach an impressive 82 before regulars Stopford and Kenyon entertained the crowd with a brisk 7th wicket stand to take the home side to 224-7 after their 50 overs.
In reply Flowery soon lost opener Gee to an excellent slip catch by Moss during a tight opening spell from Rogers and Usher. At less than two runs per over, Dyson & skipper Mistry began the recovery, before the visitors slipped to 51-5 thanks to an impressive spell of slow left-arm from young Sonczak who finished with 4-27. A stand of 50 by Williams (D) and Lomax was not enough to earn a point for their team, but frustrated the home side’s attempts to take maximum points as Flowery finished on 147-9. All in all an impressive effort from such a young home side, with 14 year old all-rounder Sonczak the pick of the bunch.
Sunday saw more fine weather and a repeat of last year’s Walkden Cup final in this season’s first round as Woodbank made the trip to North Road keen to avenge their defeat last summer. Again Glossop won the toss and chose to bat first. Pro Lee Dale fell early (8), one of his rare failures , and it was left to Dale Pennington (42) and Joe Moss (54) to carry the fight beyond the hundred mark. However 175-5 became 197 all out due mainly to the slow left-arm spin of Kennedy. Home supporters considered the total to be at least 30 short of a reasonable target on the customary good North Road wicket in such favourable conditions.
The Woodbank batsmen wasted no time in their pursuit of a winning total, with England U17s player Harry Dearden leading the way with a fine 58. Pro McIntosh and skipper Steve Dearden each scored 43 as the home bowlers fought hard to keep their side in with a chance. Joe Moss completed an excellent all-round effort with 1-22 off his 10 overs, but the scores were level as Tim Rogers bowled the last over of the match. The man-of-the- match of last year’s final was unable to produce the miracle over to save the game and Woodbank progressed to the 2nd round with a six wicket victory after a batting display in stark contrast to their heavy defeat last year. With this first defeat of the season, Glossop’s cup heroics of the last two years, in both the Walkden and Hulme cups, were not to be repeated and the team can concentrate on holding on to their lead at the top of the LCL table.
Next weekend sees a league trip to Dukinfield and the first round of the Lancashire Cup in Rochdale.