Mixed Fortunes for Lancs Women
In their final two league matches of the season Lancs Ladies had mixed fortunes in losing narrowly to Staffs and beating The Netherlands.
Against Staffs on a gloomy day Lancs fielded first and put on one of their poorer bowling displays of the season. Even though they removed the two most dangerous Staffs players Wyatt and Villani early the left-handed Jones came to the wicket and played extremely sensibly, waiting patiently for the bad ball which was then efficiently dispatched. Staffs finished up on 154 for 7 scoring 40 from the last 5 overs. Lancs hopes in the field were boosted by 4 outstanding catches from Nat Brown and a smart run out by Bhumika Doshi. Chasing a total of 154 in 47 overs, our most efficient bowling coming from skipper Jenny Laycock with 2 for 22. In their innings Lancs kept ahead of the run rate being aware that rain might be in the offing unfortunately they lost wickets at regular intervals in the process. When Nat Brown was out for 43 followed by 2 more quick wickets it appeared that their chances of victory had gone. However debutant Maddy White entered the scene at number 9 and after carefully negotiating her first few overs she was joined by number 11 Alex Hartley they took the score from 120 to 144. At which point they required 11 to win from 7 balls. Maddy went for another big shot which would have carried for 6 if the boundary fielder had not held on to a good catch. Lancs lost by 10 runs.
Against The Netherlands at Monton and Weaste CC Lancs lost the toss and were put in to bat Emma Lamb and Jess Couser put on their best opening partnership of the season to take the score to 90 before they were separated. This set a base from which the middle order batsmen could attack and Lancs ended up at 194 fro 5 from 50 overs. Couser 27, Lamb 62, K Cross 25 and Brown 43. This would be a tough target for most teams to chase down and when the Dutch were reduced to 18 for 3 by Titmuss and Brown, the writing was on the wall. However Crewdson and Stalenberg had different ideas and with 42 and 63 respectively they put The Netherlands in with a chance. At this point Fairclough the Lancs wicket keeper took off the gauntlets and had a bowl. She took 3 wickets in her 7 overs including the dangerous Stalenburg and The Netherlands subsided to 157 all out. Lancs win by 37 runs.
Lancs have finished the season in a comfortable mid-table position in Division 2 and have a young and improving team. They will be looking forward to next season when they will be hoping to continue their improvement and put in a realistic title challenge.
Tony Potter (Lancashire Women Team Manager)
Please also visit the Lancashire County women and girls dedicated Play-Cricket website, where you will find fixtures, results and player averages for the full season: http://lancashirewomen.play-cricket.com/.