Super Saturday followed by black Sabbath

Greenmount first eleven marched on to the semi-finals of the Worsley Cup on Saturday, thanks to another Jacques Snyman hundred when Rishton were the visitors. However, two convincing defeats to Accrington on Sunday for both the first and second teams put a dampener on things writes SAM CHADWICK.

Travis Townsend

Starting on a positive note, it was a belligerent performance from the Mount as their excellent cup run continued. Having been asked to bat in a rain-affected 30-over affair, Snyman’s 111 from 88 balls, followed by Travis Townsend’s brutal 89 not out from 57 balls, saw them to an imposing total of 247 for 3.

This innings brought Townsend onto 299 runs in just three innings in the Worsley Cup. Well over half of his 498 runs this season have now come in this format, and it is hoped that more captain’s performances can take Greenmount all the way.

The second innings wasn’t all plain sailing though, as Rishton got within 20 runs of their target thanks to fifties from Keiren Grimshaw and Brad Boddie. However, Callum Hunter took 3 for 33, with another five wickets being shared between five bowlers, to regularly keep the away side behind the game.

A similar situation arose on Sunday, with the villagers being asked to bat in a 29-over game at Accrington. But there were to be no such heroics from their usually prolific top four as they fell to 54 for 4 early on. A battling 35 from 41 balls by Dan Stevens stopped the rot, along with Gav Nicholl’s 24 from 30 balls, seeing the away side to a modest 129 for 8.

Dan Stevens

Accrington suffered no real panic in their chase, making it to the total with eight wickets in hand. Their namesake pro, Jurie Snyman, hit 92 off 87 balls to carry his side over the line in 26.4 overs.

Perhaps the most disappointing loss of the weekend, however, came for the second team in the reverse fixture at the Log Cabin.

Put into bat on a green pitch, they fell to 55 for 6 after some skilful bowling from Accrington opener Mohammed Tayyib, who ended with figures of 5 for 18. It was an outstanding innings of 50 not out off 74 balls from Noah Birtwistle, backed up by a battling 25 off 65 from captain Oliver Dixon, that saw the home side to a competitive 149 for 8.

The 50 was Birtwistle’s first at second team level, and he and Dixon soon went to work with ball in hand afterwards. The former stood out again as his left-arm spin took 4 for 44, with the latter’s economic bowling seeing him pick up 2 for 23. Their efforts, along with Ed Dickinson’s 2 for 18, saw Accrington at 78 for 9 before things rather unraveled.

The away side’s number ten, Zain Hanif, took advantage of some below-par Greenmount bowling towards the end of the innings as he hit 40 from 43 balls. This, along with a battling 9 off 48 from number eleven Antonio Lo-Guidace, saw the away side over the line with just a wicket to spare in a bitterly disappointing loss.

Results mean the firsts move down to second, overtaken by Walsden. The seconds sits in seventh, with Accrington moving above them. The draw for the semi-finals of the Worsley Cup will take place in due course.

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