For the second time this season, Norden felt they had posted a competitive score against Worsley Cup winners Ramsbottom and for the second time the Acre Bottom club knocked the runs off with relative ease. On this occasion, the first innings score was 256 for 9 but the margin of victory for the visitors was 7 wickets.
Norden started badly with the bat and both openers were dismissed before the score had reached 20. Harvey Fitton and Ashar Zaidi then came together to provide the partnership that would form the backbone of the Norden innings. Fitton got off the mark with a pulled 6 from just his second ball and Zaidi also looked in an aggressive frame of mind from the start of his innings. The two left-handers had put on 122 when Fitton chipped Dan Pyke to cover and fell for 57. Zaidi continued to push on but he began to be starved of the strike and he was dismissed just 9 short of a century when he looked to up the ante but failed to clear Josh Dentith on the long-on boundary. Greg Butterworth played nicely for his 42 but Norden never got the acceleration they would have wanted in the last 15 overs and the run-rate stayed around the 5 an over mark that it had been for most of the innings. Kieren Grimshaw picked up 4 wickets for Rammy and sub-pro Ashen Silva, although wicketless, bowled his 15 overs for under 40 which proved to be by far the most economical spell of the game.
Norden got a good early breakthrough when Tom Parton looked to hit Zaidi over the top but could only find Greg Butterworth at mid-off. This brought Silva to the crease and he played himself in with ease as Jonathan Dack took the attack to Norden at the other end. Dack fell for 44, 40 of which were scored in boundaries, and when Oli Holt’s slower ball picked up the key wicket of Grimshaw a few runs later, Norden felt they were favourites. Harry Caton and Silva soon put that theory to bed though and Caton scored quickly from the get go whilst Silva looked completely untroubled at the other end, running the ball around comfortably and finding the boundary when presented with anything loose. Skipper Hashum Malik was at least one, and probably two bowling options light and there was little he could do as the Rammy pair took the game away from Norden. Their unbeaten partnership of 160 was chanceless and deserved to win any game, Silva reaching his century from 108 balls and eventually finishing unbeaten on 117 with Caton 64* at the other end. Another disappointing result for Norden in a season that is petering out somewhat. They must now go to Walsden on the final day of the season and win if they are to be sure of a Lancashire Cup spot for next season.
1st XI Scorecard: https://norden.play-cricket.com/website/results/5000215#
1st XI Highlights: https://youtu.be/0wc8KGP_QKk
The 2nds suffered a heavy defeat against the same opposition. We won’t go into too much detail on that one but suffice to say they were back at Stag Park to see the majority of the 1st team game.
2nd XI Scorecard and ‘Highlights’: https://norden.play-cricket.com/website/results/5000285
The 3rds had a much better day at home to Greenmount. An excellent all-round bowling display saw the visitors lose wickets regularly on their way to being bowled out for 86. There were 3 wickets each for Mohammed Omar and impressive young left-arm seamer Will Hindley. The chase started badly as Lancashire u-15 seamer Max Birtwistle dismissed Oli Kirkby and Stan Kearns with successive balls to leave Norden on 2 for 2. Omar and Charlie Gooding played calmly to ease the pressure and they put on 73 to take the Stags all-but over the line. Omar finished unbeaten on 57 in the eventual 6 wicket win.
3rd XI Highlights: https://youtu.be/UwKQKeSNPrQ