WARRINGTON won by 13 runs in the last over of their Vivio Cheshire County League game against Northwich.
The result kept them in second place in division two – unbeaten and trailing the leaders by 12 points only because of one match lost to the weather.
Asked to bat first at Walton Lea, they reached 200-9, owing much to a fine 88 from Brad McIntosh.
It was a better total than had seemed possible when they were 162-8, but an unbeaten 29 from skipper James Rudd took them to the 200 mark.
The visitors made a decent attempt at reaching their target, but Ashley Scholes, 3-35 and Jonathan Fletcher, 3-37 bowled well to restrict them to 187 all out.
Warrington 2nd suffered a heavy defeat at Cheadle where they were tumbled out for 53, with Brad Roden, 17, the only batsman to reach double figures.
The hosts knocked off the runs without loss.
In the premier division, Grappenhall avoided defeat for the first time this season, showing real fighting spirit against 2016 champions Alderley Edge to earn a draw.
The visitors batted first on a batsman-friendly wicket at Broad Lane and posted a formidable total of 263- 4 off 55 overs with the Grappers bowlers toiling in the conditions. Gaz Burns, bowled 17 overs to claim a creditable 3-58 to help stem the flow of runs in what could have been a bigger total.
Grappers got off to the worst possible start as they were 31-3 through a mixture of some poor shot selection and excellent bowling from the visitors. Skipper Adam Roylance and Ben Bodha batted patiently to repair the situation for Grappers and built an excellent partnership that gave Grappers an unlikely chance of victory.
Both players batted superbly and scored excellent half centuries but when Roylance fell for a superb 78 and Bodha for an elegant 64, victory looked unrealistic. Some superb stroke play from Burns and Jamie Bye kept the momentum going but when both fell Grappers hung on for the draw to finish on 237-8. It was important to avoid a fourth consecutive defeat and with the fight shown during this match there is momentum to build on in the coming weeks.
Grappenhall 2nd remarkably lost at Alderley Edge, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. They bowled superbly to dismiss the hosts for 157 inside their 50 overs with skipper Ross Arrowsmith and Will Metcalfe picking up three wickets apiece.
Grappers were very well placed to pick up their fourth win on the bounce at 12- 5 with Josh Hayes on 40, but that’s when things changed. A mixture of some excellent bowling and fielding from the hosts allied with some poor shot selection and decision making saw Grappers’ tail crumble as they fell seven runs short of their target with three overs remaining.
Grappenhall 3rd comprehensively won their match at home to Marple to make it two from two at the start of the league season. Marple looked well set for a big total on a good track at 80-2 off 20 overs but the introduction of David Seed changed things as his accurate seam bowling stemmed the flow of runs and picked up a couple of key wickets. Seed finish with remarkable figures of 2-12 off his 11 overs.
From ball one the run chase never looked in doubt as youngsters Ben Bravington and Francis Young batted patiently and worked the ball around with little pressure. Both batsmen played some excellent shots as they took Grappers to within sight of the win.
When Bravington fell for 54 it was left to Young and Richie Holden to finish things off. Young passed 50 for the first time for the club and Holden was brutal against the inexperienced attack as they finished with 61 and 32 not out respectively for Grappers to win by nine wickets with plenty of time to spare.
In the Cheshire League, Appleton suffered their first defeat of the season at Heaton Mersey.
After a poor start, Appleton looked to have recovered at 90-5 with skipper Alex Wright hitting 37. Unfortunately a disastrous late order collapse saw them crumble to 96 all out. Despite four wickets for Amir Aslam, Heaton Mersey knocked the runs off in 29 overs.
Reza Zaidi hit 86 as Appleton 2nd ran up 202-8 at Lyons Lane in their local derby against Stretton Despite four wickets from Dave Sujith, Stretton hung on for a draw with 139-9.
Appleton 3rd won a thrilling victory six-run over Trafford Metrovics at the Grange, in Latchford. After the hosts ground their way to 93-9 in 45 overs, vice-captain Chris Tomlinson ripped through Trafford’s top order taking 6-33 as the visitors were bundled out for just 87.
Travelling to Bowden Vale, Appleton 4th ground out a draw.
The hosts ran up 177-9 in their 45 overs with Marcus Pepper taking 4-34. Stubborn resistance from Appleton’s batting saw them finish on 80-9.
Lymm Oughtrington Park went dopwn by 82 runs at home to Stockport Georgians.
The visitors elected to bat first and declared on 191-7, Nick Chadbourne, 2-46 and Mathew Bradshaw 2-26 being the pick of the Lymm bowlers.
But Lymm were dismissed for 109, the main contributions coming from the experienced Travis Scholes, 32, Chadbourne, 20 and Bradshaw 22.
Lymm 2nd also lost at Mobberley after being asked to bat first.
They reached 166-7, with the main contributions coming from Graham Waumsley, 37, Jake Hughes, 34 and Arvind Pillai 41 not out.
But this proved to be not enough as the home side reached 169-8, despite Tony Spaven’s 3-38.
Stretton went down at home to Middlewich despite totalling 204-6, S Malik 81. The visitors knocked off the runs for the loss of only three wickets, Malik taking 2-32.
A below-strength Glazebury lost by 27 runs at home to Tranmere Victoria desp;ite a rich haul of wickets for paceman Sam Stanier who took 7-35 as the visitors were dismissed for a modest 125 in 30 overs.
But Glazebury’s batsmen struggled with only Stanier, 19 and Jordan Carroll, 27, reaching double figures as they were bowled out for 92.
Warrington 4th reached 93-5 in 45 overs at Winnington Park, Andy Goodfellow top scoring with 34 and Tim Rothwell hitting 21.
The home side reached their target for the loss of six wickets, John Burgess taking 3-22.
APPLETON’s unbeaten run in the Cheshire Women’s Cricket League ended at Oakmere despite them posing 123-4, with a career best 69 not out from Holly McCurrie.
Emma Barlow hit 25 to follow her century the previous week.
But Oakmere reached 126-4 with overs to spare as Shami Ahmed hit 49 and Helen Smith 41. Sami Fowler took 2-19.
The result left Appleton third in the division one table.
In Division Three East, Appleton 2nd defeated Woodley, 74-9 by eight wickets, Amy Jones taking 4-3 and hitting 29 not out in a fine all-round performance.
The ever-improving Lymm Oughtrington Park hit 100-5 against Marple, Sue Jones hitting 23. Marple were held to 89-7, Lorraine Robinson taking 3-16.