Updated: May 15, 2019
It was a mixed weekend for Bacup with both first and second teams going out of the cup at the first hurdle on Saturday, but then following that up with league wins on Sunday.
At Hare Hill, after being invited to bat first, Littleborough made a total of 198 for 7, thanks largely to Clint Perren who made a chanceless 109 not out in a solid innings, scoring heavily in the final few overs. Bacup professional Serasinghe bowled very tightly conceding only 23 runs in his allotted 10 overs, whilst Ben and Sam Lord picked up two wickets apiece.
With Serasinghe and Matt Thompson at the crease Bacup appeared to be coasting to victory until the former presented his wicket to Perren by driving in the air and being caught in the covers. Bacup collapsed from 131 for 4 to 156 all out with Thompson making 39, Serasinghe 35 and Fielding 20. Ex professional Perren completed a fine all round performance by taking 4 for 26 and holding on to two catches.
It was a dismal display by the second eleven at Lanehead with Littleborough making 212 for 9. Harris bowled well in conceding only 18 runs in his 10 overs, but the Bacup bowlers contributed an astonishing 41 runs in wides and 53 extras in total. It was a disappointing response with only Knights on 23 not out troubling the scorers as Bacup folded for 94 all out.
It was a much better performance on Sunday at home to Rishton as Bacup made it three out of three in the league. Bacup were invited to bat first and made full use of the opportunity to post a total of 203 for 7. Serasinghe was in imperious form and never looked in trouble as he compiled a marvellous 119 not out in 138 balls. There were no other major contributions, but the Bacup amateurs worked hard to keep the professional company at the crease.
In response Rishton were soon in trouble on 8 for 4, but a century partnership between Sanderson and Patel brought them back in to the game. However, they both departed and with Rishton on 120 for 7 the game seemed over again until a ninth wicket partnership of 45 gave the away team fresh hope. Rishton were finally bowled for 173 picking up 3 bonus points for their efforts. Bacup picked up the maximum 12 points with Ben Lord continuing his fine start to the season taking 6 for 57 and Serasinghe completing a super all round performance with 3 for 32 off his 15 overs.
The second eleven also put in a much better performance at Church on Sunday. After slumping to 86 for 6 Bacup made 160 for 9 with Adam Highley on his return making 54. However, it was Knights with 32 not out helped by some sensible batting from the young tailenders who used all of the overs to post a decent total.
In response, Church were 91 all out with Shepherd taking 3 for 27, Charlie Gansler 3 for 17 and George Sumner 1 for 6 from 7 overs.
On Bank Holiday Monday the thirds entertained Rishton at Lanehead. Rishton posted a useful total of 179 for 8 thanks largely to a third wicket partnership of 88 between Eddleston (64) and Fox (46). Josh Holt took 3 for 37 and George Sumner 2 for 22.
Bacup were struggling on 30 for 3 until a fourth wicket partnership of immense maturity between 17 year old Holt with 64 and 14 year old Charlie Gansler with 62 took Bacup to the cusp of victory. Shepherd then weighed in with 18 not out to see Bacup home with 6 overs to spare.
Bacup made it two wins in two with a comfortable win at The Cliffe against Great Harwood. Bacup were asked to bat first and made a steady start in difficult conditions, putting on 34 for the first wicket before Gansler fell LBW to Great Harwood's professional De Silva for14. Opening partner Newbitt again looked good in making a very useful 38. Schofield joined the Bacup professional Serasinghe at the wicket and although he only made 19, it was a fine third wicket partnership of 61. In longish grass it was very difficult to hit boundaries.
Nevertheless, Serasinghe made an excellent score of 72 with lots of twos and threes. Matt Thompson was promoted to five in the order and weighed in with 26 off just 24 balls, whilst skipper Fielding remained undefeated on 10 as Bacup posted an excellent total, given the conditions, of 209 for 5. De Silva was pick of the Great Harwood attack with 4 for 54 off his 15 overs.
In response Great Harwood were never really in control of the run rate. Bacup again bowled well and wickets fell at regular intervals. Opener Matthew Oddie made a patient 35 from 85 balls and pro De Silva 26 as Harwood fell 40 short, finishing on 170 for 9, denying Bacup the two bowling bonus points. Ben Lord was in the wickets taking 4 for 53 from 13 overs, including the wicket of De Silva, who fell to an excellent catch from Serasinghe. The Bacup professional is looking to be a good acquisition and he again bowled well, taking 1 for 34 from his 15 overs, whilst Aspinall and Naylor picked up two wickets apiece.
After an excellent win the week before, Bacup Seconds slumped to defeat at home to Great Harwood. On another difficult track Harwood were allowed to score far too many, making 171 all out. Veteran Russell Whalley made 51 whilst Sam Lord, on his return after suspension took 4 for 35 and Sam Harris 3 for 24. In response nobody was patient enough to get to grips with the conditions and Bacup capitulated for a disappointing 93 all out, with extras (24) being the top score and Dom Boardman making 13.