Win or lose – sometimes you have to take a step back and reflect on what a stupendous game cricket can be.
Prestwich 1sts crashed 270 runs in just 36 overs on Saturday – only for Flixton to smash the target with 7 balls in hand.
A quite incredible game – featuring no less than 32 sixes. The lost ball count must have reached double figures.
Conversely, the 3rd team on Sunday found themselves in an equally mesmerising but low-scoring, top-of-the-table clash with Whalley Range 3rd XI – and lost agonisingly by one wicket after looking dead and buried.
Two thrilling games – despite Prestwich ending up on the losing side.
The first team’s trip to Flixton actually followed the usual script of previous encounters there: delayed start due to rain followed by a spellbinding finish.
Professional Ali Azmat scored his first century for Prestwich, cracking 114 (including 7 sixes) and had excellent support all the way down the order. Ryan Stanbury (45),Danny Pawson (34), Lee Dale (30) and a remarkable 26 from Sam Holden – who only faced six balls, the first three of which he smacked for six.
Usman Tariq (69) and Luke Perry (40) helped Flixton get off to a fluent start, but it was the spectacularly brutal innings of Marlon Welcome-Goodman which swung the game in the home team’s favour.
He hit an unbeaten 115 in only 67 balls, with 7 sixes. One of these maximums thankfully left team-mate Shay Parkinson relatively unharmed. He was at the non-striker’s end when Welcome-Goodman hammered a delivery straight back down the wicket, and it glanced off the side of Parkinson’s head – who was helmetless- and cannoned for six.
The 2nd team’s game at home to Littleborough Lakeside 1sts was far less dramatic, and resulted in an excellent victory. Peter Lorenzini’s men dismissed the visitors for 115, with the skipper himself taking 4 for 19, and the off-spin of Aaryaman Roy reaping a fine return of 5 for 34.
An unbeaten 62 from Adam Taylor ensured a comfortable eight-wicket triumph.
The 3rd XI could only manage a total of 91 against Whalley Range 3rds on Sunday, which had been boosted with a late order 22 from Anees Arif. This looked well below par when Range were ticking along nicely at 56 for 2 before Karl West struck three times in a short space of time, West took 4 for 14 and Umar Arif 3 for 20 as the visitors were made to fight for every last run and scrambled over the finishing line with one wicket to spare.